While it's proper and fair to expect a publicly traded business to meet expectations for revenue, profitability, and so on, no company's performance or potential is neatly encapsulated in a single earnings release.
Most likely, investors were worried about guidance. Following the trailing quarter's nearly $100 million non-GAAP (adjusted) net profit, MasTec is expecting a Q1 GAAP net loss of approximately $44 million. Shareholders like predictability and consistent profitability. MasTec is providing neither.
However, the construction business is cyclical and tends to hibernate during the colder months. MasTec investors need to accept some degree of choppiness in the fundamentals for that reason alone. Also, a recent acquisition (of peer Henkels & McCoy) will affect the profit and loss statement because of integration costs, and project delays will similarly affect results.
Yet MasTec is beautifully poised to benefit from work deriving from the government's $1 trillion infrastructure bill passed into law November. It's not clear how much it might reap from participating in national infrastructure refurbishment, but we can assume it'll do well if it successfully wins even just a few of the resulting projects.
So let's zoom out a little. For the entirety of 2022, MasTec is guiding for $9.5 billion in revenue, which would be well higher than the just under $8 billion of 2021. The company is anticipated to land well in the black with a $273 million net profit.
Yes, that's well below the previous year's nearly $331 million, but we should remember that MasTec is a company willing to grow not only organically, but through acquistions like that of Henkels & McCoy.
All in all, investors probably shouldn't freak out about the company's latest set of earnings. MasTec has a strong future ahead of it, in an environment where a monster spender (the U.S. government) is about to shower its sector with money. This stock is absolutely worth considering as a buy on the current share price weakness.