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What's in Store for Kroger in 4Q?

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The Kroger Company ((KR - Free Report) ), an S&P 500 company, is slated to report its fourth-quarter fiscal 2012 results on Mar 7. In the last quarter it posted a positive surprise of 7%. Let’s see how things are shaping up for this announcement.

Growth Factors this Past Quarter

A dominant position among the nation’s largest grocery retailers enables Kroger to sustain growth in both its top and bottom line, expand its store base, and boost its market share. The company’s strong corporate and national brands helped gain customer loyalty. These factors, along with the Customer 1st strategy and effective cost management helped the company to post better-than-expected results in the last quarter.

Earnings Whispers?

Our proven model does not conclusively show that Kroger is likely to beat earnings this quarter. That is because a stock needs to have both a positive Earnings ESP (Read: Zacks Earnings ESP: A Better Method)and a Zacks Rank of #1, #2 or #3 for this to happen. This is not the case here as you will see below.

Zacks ESP: ESP for Kroger is 0.00%. This is because the Most Accurate Estimate stands at 70 cents, which is in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate.

Zacks Rank #3 (Hold): Kroger’s Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) lowers the predictive power of ESP because the Zacks Rank #3 when combined with a 0.00% ESP makes surprise prediction difficult. We caution against stocks with Zacks Ranks #4 and #5 (Sell rated stocks) going into the earnings announcement, especially when the company is seeing negative estimate revisions momentum.

Other Stocks to Consider

Here are some other companies you may want to consider as our model shows they have the right combination of elements to post an earnings beat this quarter:

J&J Snack Foods Corp. ((JJSF - Free Report) ), Earnings ESP of +5.00% and Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy)

Kraft Foods Group, Inc. (), Earnings ESP of +3.18% and Zacks Rank #2 (Buy)

Safeway Inc. (), Earnings ESP of +2.78% and Zacks Rank #2 (Buy)

In-Depth Zacks Research for the Tickers Above

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The Kroger Co. (KR) - free report >>

J & J Snack Foods Corp. (JJSF) - free report >>

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