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Wall Street expects stronger Q4 but comparisons get tougher

January 24/2011

(ICIS) -- Wall Street analysts are expecting mostly higher fourth-quarter 2010 earnings from US chemical companies along with some upside surprises. However, the year-on-year comparisons will be tougher than the second- and third-quarter year-on-year comparisons.

The analyst noted that only a handful of companies were expected to post profit declines - Huntsman, Arch Chemicals, Solutia and DuPont, reflecting specific issues such as a higher tax rate (Huntsman), timing shifts (Arch), the return of incentive compensation (Solutia) and tough comps (DuPont).

US coatings and chemicals producer PPG has already reported an earnings beat, coming in with fourth-quarter earnings per share of $1.25 (?0.93) versus the consensus estimate of $1.13.

However, shares of PPG fell 2% post the Q4 release as strong segment results were overshadowed by concerns over rising raw materials and slower China GDP, said Deutsche Bank analyst David Begleiter.


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