United Parcel Service (NYSE: UPS) reported earnings on Jan. 31. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Dec. 31 (Q4), United Parcel Service missed slightly on revenues and missed expectations on earnings per share.

Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue improved and GAAP earnings per share increased.

Margins increased across the board.

Revenue details
United Parcel Service booked revenue of $14.17 billion. The 16 analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ hoped for a top line of $14.45 billion. Sales were 5.6% higher than the prior-year quarter's $13.42 billion.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions.

EPS details
Non-GAAP EPS came in at $1.28. The 22 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ anticipated $1.34 per share on the same basis. GAAP EPS of $1.25 for Q4 were 12% higher than the prior-year quarter's $1.12 per share.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Figures may be non-GAAP to maintain comparability with estimates.

Margin details
For the quarter, gross margin was 50.9%, 2,630 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 14.0%, 100 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 8.6%, 30 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $13.21 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $1.01.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $56.13 billion. The average EPS estimate is $4.88.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a four-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 1,525 members out of 1,735 rating the stock outperform, and 210 members rating it underperform. Among 471 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 431 give United Parcel Service a green thumbs-up, and 40 give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on United Parcel Service is outperform, with an average price target of $83.24.

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Seth Jayson had no position in any company mentioned here at the time of publication. You can view his stock holdings here. He is co-advisor of Motley Fool Hidden Gems, which provides new small-cap ideas every month, backed by a real-money portfolio. The Motley Fool owns shares of United Parcel Service. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.