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What's in Store for CenterPoint Energy (CNP) in Q4 Earnings?

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CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (CNP - Free Report) is set to report fourth-quarter 2020 results on Feb 25, before the opening bell.

In the last reported quarter, the company delivered an earnings surprise of 6.25%. Moreover, it surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in the trailing four quarters, the average surprise being 13.22%.

Let’s see how things have shaped up prior to this announcement.

Factors to Consider

While at the onset of the fourth quarter, CenterPoint Energy’s service territories experienced below normal temperatures accompanied with record snowfall, above normal temperature prevailed in November and December.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

CenterPoint Energy, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

CenterPoint Energy, Inc. price-eps-surprise | CenterPoint Energy, Inc. Quote

Moreover, a few strong storms, including hail storms, were reported in the company’s service areas. This might have led to frequent outages, thereby hurting its electricity sales.

Overall, the weather may have hurt the company’s soon-to-be-reported quarterly revenues.

Furthermore, while CenterPoint Energy has been witnessing increased residential electric usage as individuals continue to stay at home or work remotely, reduced demand has been witnessed at electric and natural gas commercial and industrial customers in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. This must have hurt its fourth-quarter revenues.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fourth-quarter revenues is pegged at $2.10 billion, indicating a 35.1% plunge from the year-ago quarter’s reported figure.

As discussed above, the company's service territories witnessed a notable number of storms and tornadoes in the fourth quarter, which might have damaged the utility’s electric poles and other infrastructure. This might have pushed up its storm restoration expenses, thereby hurting its bottom-line performance.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fourth-quarter earnings is pegged at 23 cents per share, implying a 49% plunge from the year-ago quarter’s reported figure.

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model predicts an earnings beat for CenterPoint Energy this time around. The combination of a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) increases the chances of an earnings beat.

Earnings ESP: The company’s Earnings ESP is +11.11%. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they’re reported with our Earnings ESP Filter.

Zacks Rank: CenterPoint Energy carries a Zacks Rank #3, currently. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Other Stocks to Consider

Here are some other stocks from the Utilities sector that are yet to release Q4 results and possess the right combination to deliver an earnings beat.

South Jersey Industries (SJI - Free Report) has an Earnings ESP of +1.72% and holds a Zacks Rank #3.

Pacific Gas & Electric (PCG - Free Report) has an Earnings ESP of +10.53% and carries a Zacks Rank #3.

Sempra Energy (SRE - Free Report) has an Earnings ESP of +6.45% and carries a Zacks Rank #3.

5 Stocks Set to Double

Each was hand-picked by a Zacks expert as the #1 favorite stock to gain +100% or more in 2020. Each comes from a different sector and has unique qualities and catalysts that could fuel exceptional growth.

Most of the stocks in this report are flying under Wall Street radar, which provides a great opportunity to get in on the ground floor.

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