In the latest trading session, Applied Materials (AMAT - Free Report) closed at $35.27, marking a -0.23% move from the previous day. This change was narrower than the S&P 500's daily loss of 0.63%. Meanwhile, the Dow lost 0.43%, and the Nasdaq, a tech-heavy index, lost 1.04%.
Heading into today, shares of the maker of chipmaking equipment had lost 6.7% over the past month, outpacing the Computer and Technology sector's loss of 7.79% and lagging the S&P 500's loss of 6.28% in that time.
AMAT will be looking to display strength as it nears its next earnings release, which is expected to be November 15, 2018. In that report, analysts expect AMAT to post earnings of $0.96 per share. This would mark year-over-year growth of 3.23%. Meanwhile, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for revenue is projecting net sales of $4 billion, up 0.85% from the year-ago period.
Investors should also note any recent changes to analyst estimates for AMAT. These recent revisions tend to reflect the evolving nature of short-term business trends. As such, positive estimate revisions reflect analyst optimism about the company's business and profitability.
Research indicates that these estimate revisions are directly correlated with near-term share price momentum. Investors can capitalize on this by using the Zacks Rank. This model considers these estimate changes and provides a simple, actionable rating system.
The Zacks Rank system ranges from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell). It has a remarkable, outside-audited track record of success, with #1 stocks delivering an average annual return of +25% since 1988. Within the past 30 days, our consensus EPS projection has moved 3.09% lower. AMAT is holding a Zacks Rank of #4 (Sell) right now.
Digging into valuation, AMAT currently has a Forward P/E ratio of 8.39. For comparison, its industry has an average Forward P/E of 10.35, which means AMAT is trading at a discount to the group.
Also, we should mention that AMAT has a PEG ratio of 0.98. The PEG ratio is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but this metric also takes the company's expected earnings growth rate into account. Semiconductor Equipment - Wafer Fabrication stocks are, on average, holding a PEG ratio of 1 based on yesterday's closing prices.
The Semiconductor Equipment - Wafer Fabrication industry is part of the Computer and Technology sector. This industry currently has a Zacks Industry Rank of 178, which puts it in the bottom 30% of all 250+ industries.
The Zacks Industry Rank gauges the strength of our individual industry groups by measuring the average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks within the groups. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.
Be sure to follow all of these stock-moving metrics, and many more, on Zacks.com.