Show Me the Revenue

Physician's Money Digest, November30 2003, Volume 10, Issue 22

The recent earnings reporting seasonhas created a rollercoaster ride inthe stock market. Stocks have taken off,fallen, and then taken off again as corporationsrolled out their results for thepast quarter. What roiled the markets,even if earnings surpassed estimates,which they often did, was the outlookfor the future. Companies (includingMicrosoft, which had a good quarterbased on operating profits per share)saw their stock prices get clobbered ifthere was even a hint in their guidancethat 2004 might not be a banner yearfor earnings. Revenue is the key to evaluatinghow realistic a company's profitpicture is, the experts say. Many companiesthat have been beefing up thebottom line by cutting costs will nowneed a steady, sustainable revenuestream to keep growing.