Palo Alto Networks (PANW - Free Report) closed at $177.33 in the latest trading session, marking a -1.1% move from the prior day. This change was narrower than the S&P 500's 3.24% loss on the day. Elsewhere, the Dow lost 3.1%, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 3.8%.
Heading into today, shares of the security software maker had lost 2.68% over the past month, lagging the Computer and Technology sector's gain of 1.25% and the S&P 500's gain of 2.73% in that time.
Investors will be hoping for strength from PANW as it approaches its next earnings release, which is expected to be February 25, 2019. On that day, PANW is projected to report earnings of $1.21 per share, which would represent year-over-year growth of 40.7%. Meanwhile, our latest consensus estimate is calling for revenue of $683.15 million, up 25.95% from the prior-year quarter.
For the full year, our Zacks Consensus Estimates are projecting earnings of $5.13 per share and revenue of $2.77 billion, which would represent changes of +28.57% and +21.77%, respectively, from the prior year.
Any recent changes to analyst estimates for PANW should also be noted by investors. These recent revisions tend to reflect the evolving nature of short-term business trends. With this in mind, we can consider positive estimate revisions a sign of optimism about the company's business outlook.
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. Over the past month, the Zacks Consensus EPS estimate has moved 6.58% higher. PANW is currently a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
In terms of valuation, PANW is currently trading at a Forward P/E ratio of 34.94. For comparison, its industry has an average Forward P/E of 48.64, which means PANW is trading at a discount to the group.
It is also worth noting that PANW currently has a PEG ratio of 1.49. This metric is used similarly to the famous P/E ratio, but the PEG ratio also takes into account the stock's expected earnings growth rate. The Security was holding an average PEG ratio of 2.56 at yesterday's closing price.
The Security industry is part of the Computer and Technology sector. This group has a Zacks Industry Rank of 18, putting it in the top 7% of all 250+ industries.
The Zacks Industry Rank gauges the strength of our 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.