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Tickers in this Article: AXP
On Wednesday, July 18, 2012, American Express (NYSE:AXP) is expected to release its second quarter earnings.

Earnings are perhaps the single most studied number in a company's financial statements because they show a company's profitability. SEE: 12 Things You Need To Know About Financial Statements

What to Expect: The consensus estimate for American's earnings is $1.09 per share, up 1.9% from a year ago when the company reported earnings of $1.07 per share.

Over the past month, the consensus estimate has slipped from $1.10, but is still up from the consensus estimate of $1.08 three months ago. Analysts are projecting earnings of $4.33 per share for the fiscal year.

Revenue for the quarter is expected to be $8.08 billion, short of last year's reported figure of $8.2 billion by 1.4%. For the fiscal year, expected revenue is $32.07 billion.

Company Performance: One of the most important estimates of stock market valuation is the price/earnings ratio (P/E ratio). High P/E stocks could be "growth" stocks, while low PE stocks may be "value" stocks. SEE: Understanding The P/E Ratio

The stock price has increased over the past quarter just slightly to $58.08 from $57.83 on April 16, 2012. American's best recent streak was when its price gained $2.43 per share between June 1, 2012 and June 8, 2012.

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