The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Dec. 31 (Q4), US Ecology beat expectations on revenues and beat expectations on earnings per share.
Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue expanded and GAAP earnings per share expanded significantly.
Margins improved across the board.
US Ecology chalked up revenue of $41.6 million. The three analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ foresaw revenue of $38.4 million on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 5.3% higher than the prior-year quarter's $39.5 million.
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.
Non-GAAP EPS came in at $0.34. The three earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ averaged $0.24 per share on the same basis. GAAP EPS of $0.37 for Q4 were 48% higher than the prior-year quarter's $0.25 per share.
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.
For the quarter, gross margin was 38.6%, 40 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 25.0%, 140 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 16.1%, 460 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $36.5 million. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.17.
Next year's average estimate for revenue is $163.3 million. The average EPS estimate is $1.15.
The stock has a four-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 487 members out of 501 rating the stock outperform, and 14 members rating it underperform. Among 157 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 155 give US Ecology a green thumbs-up, and two give it a red thumbs-down.
Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on US Ecology is outperform, with an average price target of $19.50.
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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. 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.