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7 companies seeking to end Q2 curse

Stephen Yang | Bloomberg | Getty Images

The second quarter has been an ugly three-month period for an unlucky group of companies. But some of these companies appear to be on the verge of breaking this second-quarter curse.

A group of seven companies in the Standard & Poor's 500, including video-game seller GameStop, computer chipmaker gear manufacturer Lam Research and senior care facility investor Health Care REIT have posted lower adjusted per-share earnings in in the second calendar quarter for the past three years, according to a USA TODAY review of data from S&P Capital IQ. But these same seven companies are expected to end the curse in the second quarter of this year by posting earnings gains.

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Consider the situation at GameStop. Since video games sell best in the fourth quarter, the second calendar quarter isn't a traditionally a strong one for the company. But even then, the second quarter has been a challenging one for GameStop. During the second quarter of 2013, the company's normalized earnings were 9 cents a share, down from 16 cents a share during the same quarter of 2012. Declines occurred in the second quarters of the previous two years, too.

But analysts say GameStop is going to break this second-quarter downturn. Analysts are calling for the company to earn 18 cents a share in the second quarter ended in July. That would be a doubling from the profit in the same year-ago period.

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Over at Lam Research, the company, too, has had a tough time of its during the previous three second calendar quarters. The company's normalized earnings fell to 77 cents, 39 cents and 21 cents in the past three second quarters, respectively. But, analysts are calling for earnings to jump 54% in the second quarter of 2014.

There still are two unfortunate companies that are expected to be plagued in the second quarter for the fourth year in a row. Amazon.com and Hudson City Bancorp all posted lower earnings in the second quarter for the past three years. These same companies are expected, too, to post lower profit again in the upcoming quarterly reports.

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Maybe 2015 will be the year they can break the curse?

Below are the seven companies analysts expect to post higher adjusted profit in the upcoming quarter, despite reporting lower earnings in the second quarter in the past three years:

Company
Symbol
Expected % EPS growth in next quarter
GameStop GME 99.40%
Lam Research LRCX 53.90%
Health Care REIT HCN 32.10%
Williams WMB 27.50%
Linear Tech. LLTC 16.50%
Entergy ETR 12.20%
Gannett GCI 9.70%
Sources: S&P Capital IQ, USA TODAY research

-- By Matt Krantz of USA Today

Symbol
Price
 
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%Change
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LRCX
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