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10 Stocks to Watch for Earnings

8. F5 Networks (FFIV - Get Report) is a provider of networking, security and data storage software. It sells its products through a range of channels, including distributors, value-added resellers and systems integrators. The company is due to publish its fiscal 2012 first-quarter results on Jan. 18.

As per the consensus estimates of analysts polled by Bloomberg, the company is likely to report net income of $81.8 million on sales of $319.06 million, compared to net income of $72.2 on sales of $268.93 million recorded during the 2011 first quarter. F5 Networks is likely to report earnings per share of $1.01 during the quarter, compared to 88 cents in the year-ago quarter.

Gross margin is seen expanding to 82.59% from 81.79% earlier. Return on equity is seen increasing to 23.98% from 18.46%, while return on assets is estimated to expand to 18.63% from 13.58% in the prior year quarter.

Of the 35 analysts covering the stock, 71% recommend a buy, while the remaining suggest a hold. There are no sell ratings on the stock. Analysts polled by Bloomberg foresee the stock gaining an average 7.4% to $119.00 in the upcoming 12 months.

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