The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended March 31 (Q1), Union Pacific beat expectations on revenues and earnings per share.
Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue expanded and GAAP earnings per share expanded significantly.
Margins expanded across the board.
Union Pacific reported revenue of $5.11 billion. The 18 analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ wanted to see a top line of $4.96 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 14% higher than the prior-year quarter's $4.49 billion.
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.
EPS came in at $1.79. The 26 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ predicted $1.64 per share. GAAP EPS of $1.79 for Q1 were 39% higher than the prior-year quarter's $1.29 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 42.1%, 380 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 29.5%, 420 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 16.9%, 270 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $5.23 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $1.94.
Next year's average estimate for revenue is $21.29 billion. The average EPS estimate is $8.08.
The stock has a four-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 1,266 members out of 1,312 rating the stock outperform, and 46 members rating it underperform. Among 341 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 335 give Union Pacific a green thumbs-up, and six give it a red thumbs-down.
Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on Union Pacific is outperform, with an average price target of $128.13.
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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.