The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Dec. 31 (Q4), Waste Connections met expectations on revenues and missed estimates on earnings per share.
Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue grew significantly. Non-GAAP earnings per share grew. GAAP earnings per share shrank.
Gross margins grew, operating margins dropped, net margins shrank.
Waste Connections logged revenue of $448.8 million. The seven analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ looked for sales of $445.0 million on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 18% higher than the prior-year quarter's $379.8 million.
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 $0.37. The eight earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ predicted $0.38 per share. Non-GAAP EPS of $0.37 for Q4 were 5.7% higher than the prior-year quarter's $0.35 per share. GAAP EPS of $0.29 for Q4 were 12% lower than the prior-year quarter's $0.33 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 42.5%, 50 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 18.1%, 190 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 8.0%, 200 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter.
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $464.3 million. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.40.
Next year's average estimate for revenue is $1.95 billion. The average EPS estimate is $1.88.
The stock has a five-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 145 members out of 155 rating the stock outperform, and 10 members rating it underperform. Among 54 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 53 give Waste Connections a green thumbs-up, and one give it a red thumbs-down.
Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on Waste Connections is outperform, with an average price target of $36.94.
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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 position in any of the stocks mentioned. 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.