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The Walt Disney Company Earnings: 1 Number You Need to Know

By Tim Beyers – Feb 11, 2014 at 3:20PM

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A Fool looks at Walt Disney's earnings report and reveals the one metric investors need to pay attention to now.

Say what you will about Walt Disney's (DIS -3.79%) earnings growth -- 32%, remarkable for a company this size -- it wasn't the highlight of the House of Mouse's fiscal first-quarter report,  Fool contributor Tim Beyers says in the following video.

What was? One number: 75. Operating income from Disney's studio entertainment group soared 75% in Q1 to $409 million on the strength of two huge late-2013 winners at the box office. Combined, Thor: The Dark World and Frozen have grossed more than $1.5 billion worldwide as of this writing. A third installment in Marvel's Thor series is already in development and the stock is up more than 7% since Disney reported earnings last Thursday.

Can the rally continue? Tim thinks so, saying he believes studio executives have "cracked the code" when it comes to funding and developing blockbuster material. In 2014, the studio will release two Marvel films of its own -- Captain America: The WInter Soldier in April and Guardians of the Galaxy in August -- while enjoying producer fees from Sony (SONY -2.62%) for The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and  21st Century Fox (FOXA) for X-Men: Days of Future Past, both due in theaters in May.

Furthermore, continued studio success should help boost consumer products sales and draw patrons to theme parks. TV, too, should see gains as Captain America: The Winter Soldier ties into ABC's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Add it up, Tim says, and 2014 is shaping up as another market-beating year for Disney stock.

Now it's your turn to weigh in. What did you think of Walt Disney's earnings report? Please watch the video to get Tim's full take and then leave a comment to let us know whether you would buy, sell, or short Disney stock at current prices.

Tim Beyers is a member of the Motley Fool Rule Breakers stock-picking team and the Motley Fool Supernova Odyssey I mission. He owned shares of Apple, Google, Netflix, and Walt Disney at the time of publication. Check out Tim's web home and portfolio holdings or connect with him on Google+Tumblr, or Twitter, where he goes by @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader.

The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Apple, Google, Netflix, and Walt Disney. 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.

Stocks Mentioned

Walt Disney Stock Quote
Walt Disney
DIS
$92.29 (-3.79%) $-3.64
Sony Group Stock Quote
Sony Group
SONY
$79.47 (-2.62%) $-2.14
Twenty-First Century Fox, Inc. Stock Quote
Twenty-First Century Fox, Inc.
FOXA

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

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