The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Dec. 31 (Q4), FirstEnergy whiffed on revenues and whiffed on earnings per share.
Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue improved significantly, and GAAP earnings per share contracted significantly.
Gross margins improved, operating margins shrank, and net margins shrank.
FirstEnergy booked revenue of $3.90 billion. The five analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ expected to see sales of $4.61 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 22% higher than the prior-year quarter's $3.50 billion.
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 $0.77. The five earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ averaged $0.88 per share on the same basis. GAAP EPS of $0.34 for Q4 were 26% lower than the prior-year quarter's $0.46 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 48.9%, 190 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 3.6%, 910 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 3.3%, 80 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter.
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $4.52 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.79.
Next year's average estimate for revenue is $16.65 billion. The average EPS estimate is $3.35.
The stock has a three-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 362 members rating the stock outperform and 22 members rating it underperform. Among 97 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 88 give FirstEnergy a green thumbs-up, and nine give it a red thumbs-down.
Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on FirstEnergy is outperform, with an average price target of $47.25.
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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.