CF Industries Holdings Outruns Estimates Again

CF Industries Holdings (NYSE: CF  ) reported earnings on Feb. 15. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Dec. 31 (Q4), CF Industries Holdings beat expectations on revenues and earnings per share.

Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue improved significantly and GAAP earnings per share expanded significantly.

Margins increased across the board.

Revenue details
CF Industries Holdings booked revenue of $1.72 billion. The 11 analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ looked for a top line of $1.66 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 39% higher than the prior-year quarter's $1.24 billion.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

EPS details
Non-GAAP EPS came in at $7.13. The 16 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ predicted $6.78 per share on the same basis. GAAP EPS of $6.66 for Q4 were 139% higher than the prior-year quarter's $2.79 per share.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

Margin details
For the quarter, gross margin was 50.3%, 1,120 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 47.7%, 1,110 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 25.5%, 930 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $1.28 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $4.83.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $5.90 billion. The average EPS estimate is $23.62.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a five-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 1,169 members out of 1,211 rating the stock outperform, and 42 members rating it underperform. Among 307 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 298 give CF Industries Holdings a green thumbs-up, and nine give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on CF Industries Holdings is outperform, with an average price target of $187.98.

Seth Jayson had no position in any company mentioned here at the time of publication. You can view his stock holdings here. He is co-advisor of Motley Fool Hidden Gems, which provides new small-cap ideas every month, backed by a real-money portfolio. The Motley Fool owns shares of CF Industries Holdings. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


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