Things continue to look up in 2012.
The S&P 500 has climbed in nine of this year's 10 weeks, even if last week's 0.09% uptick barely made the cut. Consumer confidence is percolating closer to home, and Europe is making some inroads into tackling its sovereign debt crisis.
I recently went over some of the companies that are expected to post lower quarterly profits when they report this week.
Thankfully, they're the exceptions and not the rule. Let's go over some publicly traded companies that are expected to stand tall this week by posting year-over-year improvement on the bottom line.
Latest Quarter EPS (Estimated)
Year-Ago Quarter EPS
Source: Thomson Reuters.
Clearing the table
Let's start at the top with Pacific Sunwear.
Don't let the red ink at PacSun scare you away, though it's certainly a grim sight for the specialty retailer. The key takeaway here is that the chain is posting narrower losses. If that's not enough to encourage you, consider that PacSun has posted smaller deficits than the analysts were forecasting in its three previous quarters.
FX Energy is another company that makes the cut this week by eyeing a smaller deficit. It doesn't sell board shorts and water-resistant shirts, though. FX Energy produces gas in Poland, which it then sells through gas-hungry Europe for roughly $10 per million cubic feet. FX Energy also produces oil from its assets in the Bakken shale.
GeoEye takes high-resolution snapshots from outer space. It then goes on to sell those digital pictures to mapping websites, oil speculators, and any entity that can use the terrain imagery.
Just last week GeoEye secured a multiyear, multimillion-dollar contract from GE Aviation to produce aviation reference data that will serve hundreds of the world's busiest airports.
EnergySolutions has no problem going nuclear. The company's services and solutions include nuclear operations, nuclear materials management, and disposal of nuclear waste.
EnergySolutions was upgraded from "market perform" to "outperform" by FBR Capital last month. The research analysts at FBR have a $7 price target on the stock, 65% higher than where the stock is now. A strong report on Wednesday will help it get that much closer.
Finally we have KIT digital. The digital assets manager already checked in with preliminary results last month, but the financials become official on Thursday morning.
"Picking up a dynamic company that's in the right place at the right time -- as more media companies seek to manage their digital assets across various platforms --for just 11 times forward earnings is a steal," I wrote three months ago when the company was singled out in my monthly 5 Stocks Under $10 column.
Even though the stock has moved 5% higher in that time, and analysts have nibbled at their projected profitability metrics, the shares of this Prague-based company are still a compelling value at 12 times this year's bottom-line estimates.
Cross those fingers, but know the fundamentals
Investors in these five stocks have a right to be excited. They are all improving their financial situations. They are worthy of the gains that the market rally has bestowed upon them over the past year.
I wouldn't be uncomfortable owning any of these companies. They're doing the right thing, regardless of Mr. Market's mood swings.
The expectations may be high, but these five stocks wouldn't have it any other way.