Cisco Historically Offers Shorts The Better Trade In The Wake Of Earnings Reports

| About: Cisco Systems, (CSCO)

Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) is slated to report its Q3 results after the bell tonight, and analysts polled by Thomson Reuters are expecting the company to report a profit of $0.47 per share on revenue of $11.57 billion.

The stock favors widening in its session-to-session performance on earnings announcements, posting wider next-day closing levels following 21 out of its last 35 extended-hours earnings events. In the near-term, the stock is maintaining the widening trend, adding to its earnings-driven after-hours moves in the next day's regular session in the last eight consecutive quarters.

Looking deeper into the performance data, shorts should be interested to know that CSCO has seen a negative post-bell earnings-driven trade in 21 of the 35 quarters we've tracked, and in 15 of those downside evening moves, or 71% of the time, the stock has followed that trade with a more aggressive negative run in the next day's regular session.

On the long side, CSCO favors reversing between the sessions, recording 14 earnings-driven upside evening moves in the 35 quarters we've followed - widening those gains six times the next day and recording eight other events where the gains were cut back or reversed the following day.

Here's the historical data:

  • On Feb. 8, 2012, CSCO slid 0.7% in after-hours trade after beating on Q2 and setting its outlook mostly in line with expectations. The stock dropped further the next day, closing the Feb. 9 regular session down 2.1%.
  • On Nov. 9, 2011, CSCO gained 3.9% in evening trade after beating Q1 estimates and setting its guidance in-line to above expectations. The stock jumped higher the next day, rising 5.7% by the close on Nov. 10.
  • On Aug. 10, 2011, CSCO advanced 7.5% in after-hours action after topping Q4 expectations and issuing upbeat guidance. The stock leaped even higher the next day, closing the Aug. 11 regular session up 15.9%.
  • On May 11, 2011, CSCO declined 3.3% in after-hours trade after beating Q3 estimates but issuing Q4 guidance below Street expectations. The stock added to its negative trade the next day, closing the May 12 regular session off 4.7%.
  • On Feb. 9, 2011, CSCO slumped 8.5% in evening trade after beating Q2 expectations but also setting its Q3 EPS view below the Street consensus. The stock tumbled lower the following day, closing the Feb. 10 regular session down 14.1%.
  • On Nov. 10, 2010, CSCO tumbled 13.4% in after-hours trade after beating Q1 estimates but also issuing a revenue growth forecast that was lighter than expectations. The stock added to its downside the next day, ending the Nov. 11 regular session off 16.2%.
  • On Aug. 11, 2010, CSCO slumped 7.9% in after-hours trade after meeting Q4 sales expectations and beating by a penny on EPS. The stock added to its negative trade the next day, closing the Aug. 12 regular session down 9.9%.
  • On May 12, 2010, CSCO declined 2.1% in after-hours action after beating Q3 estimates and setting in-line guidance. The stock moved deeper south the following day, closing the May 13 regular session off 4.5%.
  • On Feb. 3, 2010, CSCO gained 3.6% in after-hours trade after beating Q2 expectations and setting its Q3 revenue guidance above Street estimates. The stock lost the bulk of its gains the following day, closing the Feb. 4 regular session with a slim 0.4% advance.
  • On Nov. 4, 2009, CSCO advanced 2.8% in evening action after beating Q1 estimates and setting its Q2 revenue view above Street expectations. It saw some of that upside trim modestly the following day, ending the Nov. 5 regular session up 2.7%.
  • On Aug. 5, 2009, CSCO declined 3.5% in after-hours trade after beating EPS expectations, meeting on sales and guiding for a year-over-year decline in Q1 revenue. The stock recovered from the downside in the following day's regular session, ending the Aug. 6 bell-to-bell session up 0.6%.
  • On May 6, 2009, CSCO advanced 2.4% in evening trade after beating Q3 expectations and guiding for a year-over-year decline in Q4 revenue. The stock turned south the following day, ending the May 7 regular session down 3.3%.
  • On Feb. 4, 2009, CSCO declined 3.6% in after-hours trade after topping expectations and guiding for a decline in revenue. The stock reversed into the green the following day, ending the Feb. 5 regular session up 3.2%.
  • On Nov. 5, 2008, the stock dropped 5.7% during evening trading after CSCO beat with Q1 results but guided for Q2 revenue decline. The loss was reduced to 2.5% the next day.
  • On Aug. 5, 2008, CSCO advanced 6.1% in after-hours trade after beating Q4 expectations and reaffirming its growth guidance. It saw that gain narrow the next day, closing the Aug. 6 regular session up 5.6%.
  • On May 6, 2008, CSCO gained 1.3% in evening trade after topping Q3 Street estimates and setting revenue guidance in a range that straddled expectations. The stock lost its gain the following day, ending the May 7 regular session down 2%.
  • On Feb. 6, 2008, the stock fell 7.5% during evening trading after CSCO largely meets with Q2 results, but its revenue guidance disappoints. Shares rebounded to close up 1.3% the next day.
  • On Nov. 7, 2007, CSCO plummeted 9.6% in after-hours trade after topping estimates but also guiding its Q2 revenue view just below the Street view. It narrowed its negative move slightly the following day, closing the Nov. 8 regular session down 9.5%.
  • On Aug. 7, 2007, CSCO rose 5.7% in night trade after topping Q4 estimates and guiding Q1 sales above Street views. Shares added a bit more the next day to end the regular session up 6.7%.
  • On May 8, 2007, CSCO slid 5.3% in after-hours trade after the company beat expectations and guided mostly in line for its Q4. It headed slightly lower the following day, losing 6.5% by the closing bell.
  • On Feb. 6, 2007, shares gained 4.5% in the evening hours after the company reported a strong year-over-year gain in revenue but offered an outlook that straddled the Street view. The gain was trimmed to 2.9% the next day.
  • On Nov. 8, 2006, CSCO gained 7.3% in night trade after topping Q1 estimates and forecasting Q2 sales up 24-25% from a year ago. However, shares gave back some of those gains, closing the next day session up 6.4%.
  • On Aug. 8, 2006, CSCO surged 9.5% in after-hours trade after the company topped Q4 expectations and set a strong revenue growth outlook. The stock added to its upside in the Aug. 9 regular session, closing the day up 14.3%.
  • On May 9, 2006, shares fell 1.2% in the evening session after a cautious revenue outlook on the evening conference call trumped quarterly results ahead of the Street?s view. Shares fell 4.2% the next day.
  • On February 7, 2006, CSCO gained 5.5% after meeting Q2 sales estimates and topping EPS by a penny. The shares strengthened further the next day, ending the regular session up 7.2%.
  • On November 9, 2005, CSCO eased 2.2% in night trade despite beating earnings expectations by a penny per share. The shares widened their losses the next day, closing regular trading down 3.3%.
  • On August 9, 2005, CSCO fell 3.4% in evening trade after topping Q2 revenue estimates and matching on EPS. It widened that loss in the August 10 regular session, sliding 6.9%.
  • On May 10, 2005 CSCO edged up 0.2% in after-hours trade after the company topped Street expectations and guided its sales view in-line to higher than estimates. It added to its upside on May 11, rising 1.8% between the bells.
  • On Feb. 8, 2005 CSCO slipped 1.5% in night trade after the company reported in-line Q2 results but set its Q3 view to match or come in slightly below estimates. It saw more aggressive downside momentum on Feb. 9, losing 3.3% by the closing bell.
  • CSCO lost 2.5% the night of Nov. 9, 2004 after reporting Q1 results matching the Street view, but issuing Q2 sales shy of current expectations. The stock outpaced its evening decline in the next day's regular session, dropping a more aggressive 6.6%.
  • CSCO declined 5% the night of Aug. 10, 2004 after the company beat estimates but offered weak guidance. The stock added to its downside on Aug. 11, tumbling 10.6% by the closing bell.
  • CSCO slid 2.2% the night of May 11, 2004 after the company reported better-than-expected Q3 results and guided its Q4 revenue modestly above the Street view. The stock closed the next day's regular session with a narrower decline, down 1.3%.
  • Back on Feb. 3, 2004 CSCO closed the after-hours down 4.5% after the company beat Q2 expectations, but noted it only expects Q3 revenue up 1% to 3% over Q2. The stock closed the Feb. 4 regular session with a more aggressive 8.8% decline.
  • On Nov. 5, 2003, CSCO closed the after-hours session with a 5.8% advance after the company reported Q1 results well ahead of the consensus. The stock hit an intra-day high of plus 6.1% on Nov. 6, but couldn't sustain the more aggressive gains it recorded in the previous night's session. It ended the Nov. 6 regular session with a more modest 5% rise.
  • On Aug. 5, 2003, CSCO closed after-hours trade down 5.1% after the company reported Q4 results in line with expectations but posted disappointing Q1 guidance. The stock closed the Aug. 6 regular session with a 6.4% decline.

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