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Will NII Holdings (NIHD) Disappoint This Earnings Season?

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The Latin American telecom operator, NII Holdings Inc. is slated to report fourth-quarter 2013 earnings before the opening bell on Feb 28, 2014.

In the last quarter, the company missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a margin of 25.0%. Let’s see how things are shaping up for this announcement.

Factors to be Considered this Quarter

Recently, NII Holdings failed to establish its iDEN walkie-talkie based phone service as a potential replacement of other digital technology formats, such as GSM and CDMA, used by mobile-phone giants in Mexico.

The company is facing severe competitive threat from America Movil S.A.B. de C.V. and Telef. These companies are aggressively deploying 3G wireless technologies in major Latin American markets, offering faster download speeds for smartphones. This is resulting in significant customer churn for NII Holdings.

In Dec 2013, NII Holdings decided to retrench workforce at its headquarter by over 25% along with eliminating over 1,400 manpower in marker operations. This restructuring process is aimed to streamline management’s structure, which is expected to improve efficiency and reduce costs by $50-$55 million per annum.

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model does not conclusively show that NII Holdings is likely to beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate this quarter. This is because a stock needs to have both a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1, 2 or 3 for this to happen. Unfortunately, this is not the case here as elaborated below.

Zacks ESP: This is because the Most Accurate estimate stands at a loss of $1.89 while the Zacks Consensus Estimate is lower at a loss of $1.74. This leads to an ESP of -8.62% for NII Holdings.

Zacks Rank: NII Holdings’ Zacks Rank #4 (Sell) further decreases the predictive power of ESP.

We caution investors against the stock going into the earnings announcement, as a Zacks earnings ESP of -8.62% combined with a Zacks Rank #4 lowers the possibility of an earnings surprise.

Other Stocks to Consider

Here are some companies to consider as our model shows these have the right combination of elements to post an earnings beat this quarter.

BlackBerry Limited has earnings ESP of +3.57% and carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Grupo Televisa, S.A.B. (TV - Free Report) has earnings ESP of +10.53% and carries a Zacks Rank #3.

Liberty Media Corporation has earnings ESP of +62.96% and carries a Zacks Rank #3.

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