Canadian Natural Resources (NYSE: CNQ) reported earnings on May 3. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended March 31 (Q1), Canadian Natural Resources beat expectations on revenues and missed estimates on earnings per share.

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

Gross margins shrank, operating margins grew, net margins increased.

Revenue details
Canadian Natural Resources tallied revenue of $3.53 billion. The seven analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ expected net sales of $3.11 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 16% higher than the prior-year quarter's $3.04 billion.

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

EPS details
EPS came in at $0.27. The 15 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ predicted $0.42 per share. GAAP EPS of $0.39 for Q1 were much higher than the prior-year quarter's $0.04 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 50.2%, 10 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 18.4%, 730 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 12.1%, 1,050 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $3.79 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.69.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $15.78 billion. The average EPS estimate is $2.78.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a four-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 1,479 members out of 1,510 rating the stock outperform, and 31 members rating it underperform. Among 376 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 371 give Canadian Natural Resources a green thumbs-up, and five give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on Canadian Natural Resources is outperform, with an average price target of $47.75.

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