As earnings reports continue to roll in, investors may be taking a closer look at companies that they own. Staying on top of the most recent releases may help investors figure out if the company is well-positioned for future success. Taking a look at some earnings projections, we note that the current quarter EPS consensus estimate for athenahealth, Inc. (NASDAQ:ATHN) is 1.01. This EPS estimate consists of 5 sell-side analysts taken into consideration by Zacks Research. For the last reporting period, the company reported a quarterly EPS of 1.08. Sell-side analysts often provide their best researched estimates for what the company will report. These estimates carry a lot of weight on Wall Street and the investing community. When a company reports actual earnings results, the surprise factor may cause the stock price to fluctuate more than normal. Investors will often pay added attention to a company that has surpassed expectations by a wide margin.

When it comes to equity investing, being too confident may be just as detrimental as not being confident enough. Many investors may think they are making all the right moves when the markets are riding high. This may be the case, but sometimes it might be good fortune. Finding confidence to make trades in down market environments may make the difference between a good portfolio and a great portfolio. It can also be quite easy to confuse skill with a long-term bull market. Many bad decisions may still get rewarded when the market keeps heading higher. On the other end of the spectrum, having too much self-doubt may leave an investor with way too many what ifs. Managing confidence in the markets may play a pivotal role when making tough investing decisions. Finding that perfect balance between the needed gusto and the correct amount of caution may help ease the burden moving forward in the equity market.

Wall Street analysts often give buy/sell/hold ratings for the companies that they track. Investors have the ability to view these sell-side ratings in order to help with their own stock research. Analyst ratings may have different interpretations. According to analysts polled by Zacks Research, the current average broker rating on shares of athenahealth, Inc. (NASDAQ:ATHN) is 2.89. This rating uses a scale between 1 and 5. Following this scale, a rating of 1 would represent a Strong Buy, and a rating of 5 would indicate a Strong Sell recommendation. Out of all these analysts offering ratings, 1 have rated the stock a Strong Buy or Buy, according to Zacks Research.

Shifting the focus to some possible support and resistance levels on shares of athenahealth, Inc. (NASDAQ:ATHN), we note that the 52-week high is currently $161.76, and the 52-week low is currently $117.95. When shares are trading near to the 52-week high or 52-week low, investors may be watching for a break through either level. Investors may also be watching historical price action. Over the past 12 weeks, the stock has moved 7.43%. Going back to the start of the year, we can see that shares have moved 0.85%. Over the last 4 weeks, shares have seen a change of 0.05%. Over the last 5 trading days, the stock has moved 1.91%. Checking in on recent session activity, we have seen that the stock has been trading near the $133.05 mark.

Looking further at shares of athenahealth, Inc. (NASDAQ:ATHN), we have noticed that the current consensus target price is $142.13. Wall Street analysts have the ability to create price target estimates for where they think the stock will be moving in the near-term. Because price target projections can differ from one analyst to the next, they may span a wide range of values. Many investors will closely track target prices, and they tend to pay extra close attention when analysts make revisions to those targets.

There is no easy answer when attempting to address the tough question of how to best approach the equity market, especially when facing a turbulent investing climate. There are many different schools of thought when it comes to stock trading. Investors may have to first gauge their appetite for risk in order to build a solid platform on which to construct a legitimate strategy. The wealth of available information has made the road a bit smoother to travel for amateur investors. Making the transition to the next level is most likely on the minds of many dedicated investors. Tracking technicals and fundamentals may also help provide a roadmap to help separate the contenders from the pretenders. As we head into the second half of the year, it remains to be seen which way the market will lean. Investors may have to do all the necessary homework in order to find stocks that will thrive under any market conditions.

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