Sappi (NYSE: SPP) reported earnings on Nov. 8. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Sep. 30 (Q4), Sappi met expectations on revenues and beat expectations on earnings per share.

Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue dropped and GAAP earnings per share increased.

Margins increased across the board.

Revenue details
Sappi tallied revenue of $1.59 billion. The two analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ expected a top line of $1.59 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 11% lower than the prior-year quarter's $1.79 billion.

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 $0.11. The one earnings estimate compiled by S&P Capital IQ averaged $0.09 per share. GAAP EPS were $0.20 for Q4 against -$0.25 per share for the prior-year quarter.

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 13.2%, 170 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 6.3%, 220 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 6.8%, 1,390 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $1.52 billion.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $6.50 billion. The average EPS estimate is $0.32.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a five-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 56 members out of 65 rating the stock outperform, and nine members rating it underperform. Among 20 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 18 give Sappi 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 Sappi is outperform, with an average price target of $3.74.

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.