W.R. Berkley Second Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

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W.R. Berkley Corporation (NYSE:WRB) will unveil its latest earnings on Tuesday, July 24, 2012. W.R. Berkley is an insurance holding company in the United States, which operates in five business segments: specialty insurance, regional property casualty insurance, alternative markets, reinsurance and international.

W.R. Berkley Corporation Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average analyst estimate is for profit of 63 cents per share, a rise of 37% from the company’s actual earnings for the year-ago quarter. The average estimate is the same as three months ago. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has risen from 62 cents during the last month. Analysts are projecting profit to rise by 21.9% versus last year to $2.62.

Past Earnings Performance: The company has beaten estimates the last four quarters and is coming off a quarter where it topped forecasts by 6 cents, reporting net income of 73 cents per share against a mean estimate of profit of 67 cents per share.

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A Look Back: In the first quarter, profit rose 16.2% to $135.3 million (94 cents a share) from $116.5 million (79 cents a share) the year earlier, exceeding analyst expectations. Revenue rose 11.7% to $1.38 billion from $1.23 billion.

Wall St. Revenue Expectations: On average, analysts predict $1.36 billion in revenue this quarter, a rise of 7.1% from the year-ago quarter. Analysts are forecasting total revenue of $5.51 billion for the year, a rise of 6.8% from last year’s revenue of $5.16 billion.

Stock Price Performance: Between April 23, 2012 and July 18, 2012, the stock price rose $1.41 (3.8%), from $37.57 to $38.98. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between June 25, 2012 and July 3, 2012, when shares rose for seven straight days, increasing 6.6% (+$2.46) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between September 15, 2011 and September 22, 2011 when shares fell for six straight days, dropping 6.4% (-$1.93) over that span.

Key Stats:

On the top line, the company is looking to build on four-straight revenue increases heading into this earnings announcement. Revenue rose 9.3% in the second quarter of the last fiscal year, 8.8% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year and 11.3% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year before increasing again in the first quarter.

After some good news last quarter, the company is trying to build on the result with this upcoming earnings announcement. Net income fell in the second quarter of the last fiscal year, the third quarter of the last fiscal year and the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year before snapping that run with a profit increase in the first quarter.

Analyst Ratings: There are mostly holds on the stock with seven of 11 analysts surveyed giving that rating.

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(Company fundamentals by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)

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