Divining the Earnings Winners

It's that time of the quarter again, when investors great and small start prognosticating who will surprise to the upside -- and to the downside -- when companies report their quarterly earnings later this month. As a long-only investor, I am looking for upside surprises, and my divining rod is the change in the consensus earnings estimate over the course of the quarter. In other words, I'm focused on names whose estimates have seen regular upward revisions. It can be surmised that these have something going for them that is not fully appreciated by the Street, and that they are likely to produce more of the magic when they report. "Cockroach theory" goes in both directions, of course.

In order to narrow down my focus, I ran a screen that looked for the biggest percentage change in the consensus fourth-quarter earnings-per-share estimate, among the large-cap U.S. stocks. The results are in this table....187 more words left in this article. To read them, just click below and try Real Money FREE for 14 days.

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