As one of the best-liked stocks in a somewhat unloved sector, Pfizer ( PFE) has shown an ability to beat analysts' estimates for quarterly earnings. That will be one of the headlines Tuesday when the drug giant issues its first-quarter results and tries to exceed Wall Street consensus estimates for the sixth consecutive quarter. For the fourth quarter of 2003, Pfizer earned 53 cents a share, topping the consensus by 2 cents. For the first quarter of this year, the consensus view according to Thomson First Call is an EPS of 51 cents on net income of $3.86 billion and revenue of $15.85 billion. Precise comparisons to the same period last year are difficult because the company was still in the process of acquiring Pharmacia. In fact, the deal was closed two weeks after the end of 2003's first quarter. Unlike many Big Pharma companies whose stocks generate little passion -- and many neutral ratings -- among Wall Street analysts, Pfizer has attracted a strong legion of supporters. According to Thomson First Call, 23 analysts recommend buying the stock and seven analysts are neutral. Carl Seiden, of J.P. Morgan, believes Pfizer's EPS growth can outpace not only its Big Pharma peer group but also the S&P 500 for the next two years. "We view that growth as low risk given the company's blockbuster growth drivers and considerable financial flexibility," Seiden said in an April 15 research report as he maintained his overweight rating on the stock. Pfizer's cash-generating ability -- and the company's use of cash to "buy growth" through acquisitions or licensing -- will help propel the company, Seiden added. (He doesn't own shares; his firm has had an investment banking relationship with Pfizer.) Seiden said Pfizer's research pipeline is "underappreciated," adding that a number of experimental drugs could be significant contributors to the company's bottom line despite Pfizer's size.