On Monday, Accenture Plc (NYSE:ACN) shares declined by nearly 2.82%, thereby trimming last week’s post-earnings gains. The company spiked more than 9% Thursday morning after releasing its most recent quarterly results after the close on Wednesday. However, it edged those gains to about 6.55% by the session-end before falling further on Friday.
The company posted FQ3 GAAP earnings per share of $2.78, outperforming the consensus for analyst estimates of $2.63. On the other hand, its quarterly revenue increased by 27.3% from the same quarter a year ago to $14.97 billion, exceeding expectations by $750 million.
Despite the recent post-earnings decline, the stock is still up more than 50% this year. Therefore, there may be no room left for more upward movements this year.
Accenture recently acquired Netherlands based renewable energy consultancy services company Zestgroup in undisclosed terms.
Is it safe to buy Accenture shares?
From an investment perspective, Accenture shares trade at steep trailing 12-month and forward P/E ratios of 43.28 and 33.95, making the stock too expensive for bargain hunters.
However, analysts expect its earnings per share to grow by 16% this year before rising at an average annual rate of 11.42% over the next five years.
Therefore, it could be an exciting option for long-term investors.
Technically, Accenture shares seem to be trading within an ascending channel formation despite the recent pullback.
However, with shares still pinned closer to overbought conditions, investors could target extended pullbacks at about $369.36, or lower at $353.86, while $399.91 and $413.40 are crucial resistance zones.
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