On March 8, Northeastern clinical lab test provider Bio-Reference Labs (NASDAQ:BRLI) released first-quarter results for the period ended Jan. 31. Here are the quick-and-dirty details for the quarter.

  • Total revenue grew 25%, attributed to a 15% increase in year-over-year patient count, as well as higher revenue per patient. Bio-Reference appears to be picking up business from the ramifications of UnitedHealth Group's (NYSE:UNH) decision to drop rival Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) in favor of LabCorp (NYSE:LH). While the contract shifts, other providers are picking up the slack.
  • Margins improved as more profitable esoteric testing grew from 36% of revenue to 43%.
  • Diluted earnings grew 56% as margin improvements and strong sales trends boosted bottom-line results.
  • Bio-Reference carries a four-star rating in the Motley Fool CAPS intelligence database, while larger rivals Quest and LabCorp carry the coveted five-star rating. Feel free to head to CAPS and tell us what you think about these companies and more.

(Figures in thousands, except per-share data)

Income Statement Highlights*

Avg. Est.

Q1 2007

Q1 2006

Change

Sales

$52,160

$53,722

$42,918

25.2%

Net Profit

--

$1,966

$1,153

70.5%

EPS

$0.12

$0.14

$0.09

55.6%

Diluted Shares

--

13,839

13,407

3.2%

*Three months ended Jan. 31, 2007, and 2006.

Get back to basics with a look at the income statement.

Margin Checkup

Q1 2007

Q1 2006

Change*

Gross Margin

48.76%

47.38%

1.38

Operating Margin

6.68%

4.65%

2.03

Net Margin

3.66%

2.69%

0.97

*Expressed in percentage points.

Margins are the earnings engine. See how they work.

Balance Sheet Highlights

Assets

Q1 2007

Q1 2006

Change

Cash + ST Invest.

$9,601

$5,343

79.7%

Accounts Rec.

$72,373

$56,407

28.3%



Liabilities

Q1 2007

Q1 2006

Change

Accounts Payable

$19,083

$13,454

41.8%

Long-Term Debt

$10,655

$0

n/a



Learn the ways of the balance sheet.

Cash Flow Highlights

Fools will have to wait until Bio-Reference files its quarterly 10-Q with the Securities and Exchange Commission for juicy cash flow details. Find out why Fools always follow the money.

Related Foolishness:

UnitedHealth and LabCorp are both Stock Advisor picks, and while UnitedHealth is also an Inside Value recommendation. Follow the preceding links to try either newsletter free for 30 days.

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.

Fool contributor Ryan Fuhrmann has no financial interest in any company mentioned. Feel free to email him with feedback or to discuss any companies mentioned further. The Fool has an ironclad disclosure policy.

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