Don't settle for ordinary quarterly reports.
I take a look at three companies that beat market expectations every week, since I believe that it's the biggest factor in a stock beating the market. Leaving Wall Street's pros with stunned expressions can be a good thing. It usually means that the companies have more in the tank than analysts figured. Capital appreciation typically follows.
Let's take a look at a few companies that humbled the pros over the past few trading days.
We can start with Joy Global (NYSE:JOY).
The maker of mining equipment posted a quarterly profit of $2.05 a share, comfortably ahead of the $1.91 a share that it rang up a year earlier. It may seem logical to expect strong results out of Joy Global: Emerging markets are tapping into their natural resources to speed up their development. However, Joy Global had still come up short in two of its three previous quarters.
Peregrine Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:PPHM) also beat the pros.
The biotech that's toiling away on a potentially promising treatment for non-small-cell lung cancer may have posted a loss of $0.06 a share, but that's well short of both the $0.16-a-share deficit it posted a year ago and the $0.09-a-share shortfall that analysts were forecasting.
Yes, Peregrine is losing money, but this is the third consecutive quarter in which Peregrine's red ink is narrowing at a quicker pace than Wall Street was expecting. It hasn't even been close: Peregrine bested estimates by 23%, 36%, and now 33% in its past three quarters, respectively.
Finally, we have Dollar General (NYSE:DG) reporting for duty.
Discount stores are a good way for cash-strapped consumers to stretch their spending power, and Dollar General's whopping 10,371 stores are there to ring up the deals. Analysts figured that Dollar General's profitability would improve 20% to $0.60 a share, but it cranked out net income of $0.63 a share.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Aristotle Munarriz has no positions in the stocks mentioned above. The Motley Fool owns shares of Joy Global. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.