The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Sep. 30 (Q4), Ashland met expectations on revenues and beat expectations on earnings per share.
Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue grew and GAAP loss per share expanded.
Gross margins increased, operating margins dropped, net margins dropped.
Ashland logged revenue of $2.06 billion. The six analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ expected a top line of $2.08 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 11% higher than the prior-year quarter's $1.85 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 $1.87. The eight earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ predicted $1.76 per share. GAAP EPS were -$3.20 for Q4 versus -$1.45 per share for the prior-year quarter.
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.
For the quarter, gross margin was 22.3%, 160 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was -13.2%, 450 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was -13.3%, 720 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter.
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $1.96 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $1.48.
Next year's average estimate for revenue is $8.67 billion. The average EPS estimate is $7.51.
Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on Ashland is outperform, with an average price target of $83.67.
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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 has no positions in the stocks mentioned above. 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.