Ralcorp Holdings Earnings Preview

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Investors are on the edge of their collective seats, hoping that Ralcorp Holdings (NYS: RAH) will top analyst expectations for the fourth consecutive quarter. The company will unveil its latest earnings on Tuesday. Ralcorp Holdings is engaged in manufacturing, distributing, and marketing Post branded cereals and private label food products in the grocery, mass merchandise, drug and, food service channels.

What analysts say

What our community says
CAPS All-Stars are solidly backing the stock with 96.4% assigning it an outperform rating. The community at large agrees with the All-Stars with 91.9% giving it a rating of outperform. Fools have embraced Ralcorp Holdings, though the message boards have been quiet lately with only 63 posts in the past 30 days. Despite the majority sentiment in favor of Ralcorp Holdings, the stock has a middling CAPS rating of three out of five stars.

Management
Ralcorp Holdings' profit has risen year over year by an average of 1.9%. Revenue has now gone up for three straight quarters.

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.

Quarter

Q2

Q1

Q4

Q3

Gross Margin

29.0%

27.1%

25.9%

25.5%

Operating Margin

14.0%

12.5%

(11.1%)

10.8%

Net Margin

7.1%

6.1%

3.7%

5.5%

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At the time this article was published

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