Investors hope Alliance Data Systems (NYSE: ADS) will top analyst estimates once again after beating predictions by $0.33 in the previous quarter. The company will unveil its latest earnings Thursday. Alliance Data Systems is a provider of data-driven and transaction-based marketing and customer loyalty solutions.

What analysts say:

  • Buy, sell, or hold?: The majority of analysts back Alliance Data Systems as a buy. But with 68.4% of analysts rating it a buy, Alliance Data Systems is still below the mean analyst rating of its nearest 10 competitors, which average 73.7% buys. Analysts like Alliance Data Systems better than competitor Fiserv overall. Nine out of 19 analysts rate Fiserv a buy compared with 13 of 19 for Alliance Data Systems. Alliance Data Systems' rating hasn't changed over the past three months.
  • Revenue forecasts: On average, analysts predict $721.2 million in revenue this quarter. That would represent a rise of 7.7% from the year-ago quarter.
  • Wall Street earnings expectations: The average analyst estimate is earnings of $1.54 per share. Estimates range from $1.47 to $1.73.

What our community says:
CAPS All-Stars are solidly behind the stock, with 92.3% granting it an "outperform" rating. The community at large backs the All-Stars, with 83.8% assigning it a rating of "outperform." Fools are keen on Alliance Data Systems, though the message boards have been quiet lately with only 79 posts in the past 30 days. Alliance Data Systems' bearish CAPS rating of one out of five stars falls short of the Fool community sentiment.

Alliance Data Systems' profit has risen year over year by an average of 44.2%.

Now let's look at how efficient management is at running the business. Traditionally, margins represent the efficiency with which companies capture portions of sales dollars. The following table shows gross, operating, and net margins over the past four quarters.






Gross Margin





Operating Margin





Net Margin





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