LB Foster (Nasdaq: FSTR) reported earnings on Nov. 1. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Sep. 30 (Q3), LB Foster beat slightly on revenues and beat expectations on earnings per share.

Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue grew and GAAP earnings per share shrank.

Margins contracted across the board.

Revenue details
LB Foster reported revenue of $170.3 million. The two analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ foresaw a top line of $167.5 million on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 4.7% higher than the prior-year quarter's $162.7 million.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

EPS details
EPS came in at $1.00. The two earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ anticipated $0.89 per share. GAAP EPS of $0.81 for Q3 were 15% lower than the prior-year quarter's $0.95 per share.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

Margin details
For the quarter, gross margin was 18.0%, 90 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 7.7%, 10 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 4.8%, 120 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter.

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $153.0 million. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.69.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $603.9 million. The average EPS estimate is $2.19.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a five-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 438 members out of 465 rating the stock outperform, and 27 members rating it underperform. Among 92 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 90 give LB Foster 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 LB Foster is outperform, with an average price target of $40.00.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.