On Jan. 22, chemical alchemist DuPont (NYSE: DD) released earnings for the 2007 fiscal year, a period ended Dec. 31.

  • DuPont likes to point out that the current 16% return on invested capital (ROIC) is twice what it was only five years ago, with an unbroken improvement trend in between.
  • A trailing quarterly dividend of $0.41 means a generous 3.8% yield at today's price. One competitor already got a thumbs-up from our Motley Fool Income Investor team -- perhaps DuPont is next?

(Figures in millions, except per-share data.)

Income Statement Highlights

FY 2007

FY 2006

Change

Sales

$30,653

$28,982

5.8%

Net Profit

$2,988

$3,148

(5.1%)

EPS

$3.22

$3.38

(4.7%)

Diluted Shares

925.4

928.6

(0.3%)

Get back to basics with the income statement.

Margin Checkup

FY 2007

FY 2006

Change*

Gross Margin

29.7%

29.5%

0.2

Operating Margin

14.3%

13.9%

0.5

Net Margin

9.8%

10.9%

(1.1)

*Expressed in percentage points.

Margins are the earnings engine.

Balance Sheet Highlights

Assets

FY 2007

FY 2006

Change

Cash + ST Invest.

$1,300

$1,893

(31.3%)

Accounts Rec.

$5,700

$4,335

31.5%

Inventory

$5,300

$4,941

7.3%

Liabilities

FY 2007

FY 2006

Change

Long-Term Debt

$6,000

$6,013

(0.2%)

The balance sheet reflects the company's health. If the 2007 numbers look too nice and round, it's because they were culled from the conference call and reported in billions.

Cash Flow Highlights

FY 2007

FY 2006

Change

Cash From Ops.

$4,300

$3,736

15.1%

Capital Expenditures

$1,698

$1,532

10.8%

Free Cash Flow

$2,602

$2,204

18.1%

Free cash flow is a Fool's best friend. The roundness-related balance sheet comment above also applies to cash from operations.

Competitive Context

Market Cap*

Trailing P/E Ratio

CAPS Rating

Monsanto (NYSE: MON)

$55.4

48.5

****

DuPont

$38.4

12.2

****

Dow Chemical (NYSE: DOW)

$32.5

9.8

****

Air Products & Chemicals (NYSE: APD)

$18.2

18.1

****

*In billions.

The mystery Income Investor guest is Dow Chemical.

Related Foolishness:

Fool by Numbers is designed to give you the raw earnings information in a timely fashion, putting all the numbers you need in one easy-to-read place. But at The Motley Fool, we believe numbers tell only part of the story, so check Fool.com for more of our in-depth discussion of what the numbers mean.

At the time of publication, Anders Bylund had no position in any company mentioned. He does have a kitchen full of DuPont Corian countertops, though. Fool rules are here.