Shares of Dublin, Calif.-based human resources facilitator TriNet Group (NYSE:TNET) closed 23.1% higher on Friday after the company reported its fourth-quarter 2018 earnings results the previous evening.
TriNet earned $0.40 per share on sales of $917 million in the quarter, with "net service revenues" of $225 million. It seems this was the number Wall Street was focusing on when it estimated TriNet would report sales of $213 million -- thus, the company "beat" on sales.
TriNet further noted that when adjusted for one-time items, its profit would have been $0.59 per share -- also more than the $0.52 pro forma profit that the Street had been looking for .
Total quarterly revenue running through TriNet increased 8% year over year, and the $225 million in revenue net of "insurance costs" grew 10% year over year. On the other hand, the $0.40 per share in GAAP profit TriNet earned was less than half of the $0.92 profit booked a year ago. (On the third hand, the company's claimed $0.59 pro forma profit was up 28% year over year).
For the full year, net service revenue likewise increased 10% to $893 million, GAAP profit grew 6% to $2.65 per share, and pro forma profit spiked 52% higher to $3.02.
Management did not give new guidance for what to expect in 2019. For what it's worth, though, Wall Street is predicting the first quarter of 2019 will see TriNet earn $0.79 per share on net service revenue of $236 million. Full-year profits in 2019 should be $3.11 (presumably, pro forma) per share on net service revenue of $943.3 million, according to the analysts.
If they're right, that will work out to an unaggressive 6% sales growth rate, and only 3% growth in profits.