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Verizon Sinks Despite Q1 Beats

By Eric Volkman - Apr 21, 2021 at 4:39PM

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The company reported growth where it counts, but investors weren't overly impressed.

On Wednesday morning, Verizon Communications (VZ 1.75%) released its latest set of quarterly results, which were met with a shrug despite some encouraging growth numbers.

For its first quarter of fiscal 2021, the telecom giant managed to increase its revenue by 4% year over year to $32.9 billion. Generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) net income also headed north, advancing by 25% to $5.38 billion. On a non-GAAP (adjusted) basis, the bottom line profit was $1.31 per share, up from the year-ago quarter's $1.26.

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Both headline numbers edged past analyst estimates. On average, the prognosticators following Verizon's stock were expecting $32.47 billion on the top line and a per-share adjusted net profit of $1.29.

Verizon eagerly pointed out that it produced top-line growth in all three of its business segments: consumer, business, and media. The largest by far -- consumer -- enjoyed nearly 5% growth to $22.8 billion, which the company said was due largely to new phone activations. The business segment inched up by just over 1%, while media -- very much the smallest of the trio -- grew its take by 10% to $1.9 billion.

The company proffered guidance for the entirety of 2021. It believes it will post an adjusted, per-share net profit of $5.00 to $5.15, with service and other revenue growth coming in at 2%. Currently in the midst of rolling out its 5G network, Verizon anticipates its capital spending will total $19.5 billion to $21.5 billion for the year.

Despite the plus signs next to the growth numbers, investors had a tepid reaction to the results. In mid-afternoon trading Wednesday, Verizon stock was slumping by nearly 0.4% against the 0.7% gain of the S&P 500 index.

 

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