RPC (NYSE: RES) reported earnings on Jan. 23. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Dec. 31 (Q4), RPC beat expectations on revenues and beat expectations on earnings per share.

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

Margins dropped across the board.

Revenue details
RPC chalked up revenue of $469.9 million. The seven analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ hoped for a top line of $457.9 million on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 2.7% lower than the prior-year quarter's $482.8 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 $0.26. The 10 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ forecast $0.24 per share. GAAP EPS of $0.26 for Q4 were 24% lower than the prior-year quarter's $0.34 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 40.5%, 390 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 19.3%, 620 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 11.8%, 360 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter.

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $429.6 million. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.21.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $1.80 billion. The average EPS estimate is $0.88.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a five-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 466 members out of 490 rating the stock outperform, and 24 members rating it underperform. Among 144 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 139 give RPC a green thumbs-up, and five give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on RPC is hold, with an average price target of $12.38.

Can your portfolio provide you with enough income to last through retirement? You'll need more than RPC. Learn how to maximize your investment income and "Secure Your Future With 9 Rock-Solid Dividend Stocks." Click here for instant access to this free report.

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.