Seeking Alpha
Recommended for you:
Value, growth, long-term horizon, medium-term horizon
Profile| Send Message|
( followers)  

Whenever a company releases earnings data that beat analyst expectations, the stock will often rise in value to price in the good news. If you believe that company characteristics can cause EPS surprises to persist across time, this list may be very interesting to you.

We ran a screen on stocks paying dividends above 2% and sustainable payout ratios below 50% for those that have consistently beaten their EPS estimates over the last four quarters.

Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the top six stocks mentioned below. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research.‬



We also created a price-weighted index of the stocks mentioned below, and monitored the performance of the list relative to the S&P 500 index over the last month. To access a complete analysis of this list's recent performance, click here.

Click to enlarge


Do you think these companies will surprise the market once again? Use this list as a starting point for your own analysis.

List sorted by average earnings surprise.

1. TAM S.A. (NYSE:TAM):
Provides passenger and cargo air transportation services in Brazil and internationally. Market cap of $2.70B. Dividend yield at 4.23%, payout ratio at 14.57%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 2.81 vs. estimate at 0.87 (surprise of 223%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.46 vs. estimate at 0.42 (surprise of 9.5%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.49 vs. estimate at 0.47 (surprise of 4.3%). In Jun 2011: Reported 0.25 vs. estimate at -0.08 (surprise of 412.5%). (Average earnings surprise at 162.33%). Might be undervalued at current levels, with a PEG ratio at 0.89, and P/FCF ratio at 8.05. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 9.93% over the last week. The stock has performed poorly over the last month, losing 17.72%.

2. Foot Locker, Inc. (NYSE:FL):
Operates as a retailer of athletic footwear and apparel. Market cap of $3.26B. Dividend yield at 3.10%, payout ratio at 40.42%. In Oct 2010: Reported EPS at 0.33 vs. estimate at 0.17 (surprise of 94.1%). In Jan 2011: Reported EPS at 0.39 vs. estimate at 0.36 (surprise of 8.3%). In Apr 2011: Reported EPS at 0.6 vs. estimate at 0.44 (surprise of 36.4%). In Jul 2011: Reported 0.24 vs. estimate at 0.12 (surprise of 100%). (Average earnings surprise at 59.7%). The stock has gained 39.44% over the last year.

3. Fidelity National Financial, Inc. (NYSE:FNF):
Provides title insurance, mortgage services, specialty insurance and information services in the United States. Market cap of $3.51B. Dividend yield at 3.06%, payout ratio at 40.24%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 0.36 vs. estimate at 0.29 (surprise of 24.1%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.58 vs. estimate at 0.3 (surprise of 93.3%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.19 vs. estimate at 0.11 (surprise of 72.7%). In Jun 2011: Reported 0.36 vs. estimate at 0.31 (surprise of 16.1%). (Average earnings surprise at 51.55%). The stock has gained 10.01% over the last year.

4. Insperity, Inc. Common Stock (NYSE:NSP):
Provides various personnel management services in the United States. Market cap of $637.13M. Dividend yield at 2.49%, payout ratio at 49.87%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 0.28 vs. estimate at 0.27 (surprise of 3.7%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.3 vs. estimate at 0.29 (surprise of 3.4%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.33 vs. estimate at 0.19 (surprise of 73.7%). In Jun 2011: Reported 0.25 vs. estimate at 0.19 (surprise of 31.6%). (Average earnings surprise at 28.1%). Might be undervalued at current levels, with a PEG ratio at 0.74, and P/FCF ratio at 3.9. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 6.22% over the last week.

5. Kaman Corporation (NYSE:KAMN):
Operates in the aerospace and industrial distribution markets. Market cap of $809.47M. Dividend yield at 2.08%, payout ratio at 25.11%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 0.49 vs. estimate at 0.39 (surprise of 25.6%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.8 vs. estimate at 0.56 (surprise of 42.9%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.45 vs. estimate at 0.39 (surprise of 15.4%). In Jun 2011: Reported 0.5 vs. estimate at 0.45 (surprise of 11.1%). (Average earnings surprise at 23.75%). The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 6.37% (equivalent to 8.9 days of average volume). The stock has gained 18.61% over the last year.

6. Comtech Telecommunications Corp. (NASDAQ:CMTL):
Designs and produces a wide range of telecom systems and services. Market cap of $890.35M. Dividend yield at 3.40%, payout ratio at 38.64%. In Oct 2010: Reported EPS at 0.79 vs. estimate at 0.61 (surprise of 29.5%). In Jan 2011: Reported EPS at 0.52 vs. estimate at 0.4 (surprise of 30%). In Apr 2011: Reported EPS at 0.47 vs. estimate at 0.39 (surprise of 20.5%). In Jul 2011: Reported 0.42 vs. estimate at 0.37 (surprise of 13.5%). (Average earnings surprise at 23.38%). Exhibiting strong upside momentum - currently trading 13.94% above its SMA20, 18.34% above its SMA50, and 18.73% above its SMA200. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 14.89% over the last week.

7. The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE:DOW):
Manufactures and supplies products used as raw materials in the production of customer products and services worldwide. Market cap of $32.24B. Dividend yield at 3.66%, payout ratio at 31.29%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 0.54 vs. estimate at 0.41 (surprise of 31.7%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.47 vs. estimate at 0.35 (surprise of 34.3%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.82 vs. estimate at 0.67 (surprise of 22.4%). In Jun 2011: Reported 0.85 vs. estimate at 0.81 (surprise of 4.9%). (Average earnings surprise at 23.33%). This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.33). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 11.39% over the last week.

8. Prudential Financial, Inc. (NYSE:PRU):
Offers various financial products and services in the United States, Asia, Europe and Latin America. Market cap of $24.79B. Dividend yield at 2.25%, payout ratio at 21.15%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 2.12 vs. estimate at 1.43 (surprise of 48.3%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 1.78 vs. estimate at 1.48 (surprise of 20.3%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 1.69 vs. estimate at 1.48 (surprise of 14.2%). In Jun 2011: Reported 1.71 vs. estimate at 1.55 (surprise of 10.3%). (Average earnings surprise at 23.28%). This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.38). Might be undervalued at current levels, with a PEG ratio at 0.71 and P/FCF ratio at 2.89. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 8.83% over the last week.

9. Nash Finch Co. (NASDAQ:NAFC):
Operates as a wholesale food distributor in the United States. Market cap of $317.70M. Dividend yield at 2.75%, payout ratio at 17.53%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 1.08 vs. estimate at 1.05 (surprise of 2.9%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 1 vs. estimate at 0.62 (surprise of 61.3%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.71 vs. estimate at 0.61 (surprise of 16.4%). In Jun 2011: Reported 0.92 vs. estimate at 0.83 (surprise of 10.8%). (Average earnings surprise at 22.85%). The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 5.12% (equivalent to 7.67 days of average volume). The stock is currently stuck in a downtrend, trading 6.9% below its SMA20, 11.61% below its SMA50, and 25.43% below its SMA200. The stock has performed poorly over the last month, losing 12.91%.

10. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. (NYSE:PNC):
Operates as a diversified financial services company. Market cap of $27.35B. Dividend yield at 2.69%, payout ratio at 10.38%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 2.07 vs. estimate at 1.36 (surprise of 52.2%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 1.5 vs. estimate at 1.38 (surprise of 8.7%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 1.57 vs. estimate at 1.37 (surprise of 14.6%). In Jun 2011: Reported 1.67 vs. estimate at 1.46 (surprise of 14.4%). (Average earnings surprise at 22.48%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 10.08% over the last week.

11. EI DuPont de Nemours & Co. (NYSE:DD):
Chemicals Industry. Market cap of $41.01B. Dividend yield at 3.73%, payout ratio at 44.94%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 0.4 vs. estimate at 0.34 (surprise of 17.6%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.5 vs. estimate at 0.32 (surprise of 56.2%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 1.52 vs. estimate at 1.36 (surprise of 11.8%). In Jun 2011: Reported 1.37 vs. estimate at 1.34 (surprise of 2.2%). (Average earnings surprise at 21.95%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 6.72% over the last week.

12. M&T Bank Corp. (NYSE:MTB):
Operates as the holding company for M&T Bank and M&T Bank, National Association that provide commercial and retail banking services to individuals, corporations and other businesses and institutions. Market cap of $9.53B. Dividend yield at 3.69%, payout ratio at 39.97%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 1.48 vs. estimate at 1.37 (surprise of 8%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 1.59 vs. estimate at 1.45 (surprise of 9.7%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 1.59 vs. estimate at 1.4 (surprise of 13.6%). In Jun 2011: Reported 2.42 vs. estimate at 1.55 (surprise of 56.1%). (Average earnings surprise at 21.85%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 8.32% over the last week.

13. Boeing Co. (NYSE:BA):
Engages in the design, development, manufacture, sale and support of commercial jetliners, military aircraft, satellites, missile defense, human space flight and launch systems and services worldwide. Market cap of $47.67B. Dividend yield at 2.61%, payout ratio at 35.04%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 1.12 vs. estimate at 1.06 (surprise of 5.7%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 1.56 vs. estimate at 1.11 (surprise of 40.5%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.78 vs. estimate at 0.7 (surprise of 11.4%). In Jun 2011: Reported 1.25 vs. estimate at 0.97 (surprise of 28.9%). (Average earnings surprise at 21.62%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 7.27% over the last week.

14. WesBanco Inc. (NASDAQ:WSBC):
Operates as a holding company for WesBanco Bank, Inc. Market cap of $507.04M. Dividend yield at 3.36%, payout ratio at 36.20%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 0.34 vs. estimate at 0.3 (surprise of 13.3%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.39 vs. estimate at 0.3 (surprise of 30%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.39 vs. estimate at 0.34 (surprise of 14.7%). In Jun 2011: Reported 0.45 vs. estimate at 0.38 (surprise of 18.4%). (Average earnings surprise at 19.1%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 8.24% over the last week.

15. The Chubb Corporation (NYSE:CB):
Provides property and casualty insurance to businesses and individuals. Market cap of $17.71B. Dividend yield at 2.52%, payout ratio at 21.15%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 1.69 vs. estimate at 1.44 (surprise of 17.4%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 1.69 vs. estimate at 1.57 (surprise of 7.6%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 1.35 vs. estimate at 1.14 (surprise of 18.4%). In Jun 2011: Reported 1.27 vs. estimate at 1 (surprise of 27%). (Average earnings surprise at 17.6%). The stock has gained 11.24% over the last year.

16. SLM Corporation (NASDAQ:SLM): Provides education finance in the United States. Market cap of $7.06B. Dividend yield at 2.91%, payout ratio at 42.26%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 0.35 vs. estimate at 0.27 (surprise of 29.6%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.75 vs. estimate at 0.71 (surprise of 5.6%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.48 vs. estimate at 0.4 (surprise of 20%). In Jun 2011: Reported 0.48 vs. estimate at 0.42 (surprise of 14.3%). (Average earnings surprise at 17.38%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 12.54% over the last week.

17. ACE Limited (NYSE:ACE): Provides a range of insurance and reinsurance products to insureds worldwide. Market cap of $21.22B. Dividend yield at 2.23%, payout ratio at 17.98%. In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 2.01 vs. estimate at 1.86 (surprise of 8.1%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 2.05 vs. estimate at 1.84 (surprise of 11.4%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.79 vs. estimate at 0.62 (surprise of 27.4%). In Jun 2011: Reported 2.01 vs. estimate at 1.66 (surprise of 21.1%). (Average earnings surprise at 17%). Might be undervalued at current levels, with a PEG ratio at 0.81, and P/FCF ratio at 6.12. The stock has gained 7.52% over the last year.

*EPS data sourced from Yahoo! Finance, all other data sourced from Finviz.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

Source: 17 Dividend Stocks With A History Of Reporting Earnings Surprises