Arch Coal Inc Earnings: Another Solid Sales Quarter

Arch Coal Inc (NYSE:ACI) reported higher profit for the fourth quarter as revenue showed growth. Arch Coal is a coal producer in the United States, that sells coal to power plants, steel mills, and industrial facilities.

Investing Insights: Will the iPad 3 Be the Next Catalyst for Apple’s Stock?

Arch Coal Inc Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Fourth Quarter

Results: Net income for Arch Coal Inc rose to $70.9 million (33 cents per share) vs. $47.8 million (29 cents per share) in the same quarter a year earlier. This marks a rise of 48.3% from the year earlier quarter.

Revenue: Rose 47.1% to $1.23 billion from the year earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: Arch Coal Inc topped the mean estimate of 31 cents per share. It fell short of the average revenue estimate of $1.3 billion.

Quoting Management: “Arch delivered solid quarterly financial results despite weakening coal market conditions as the fourth quarter progressed,” said Steven F. Leer, Arch’s chairman and chief executive officer. “In particular, our Powder River Basin operations rebounded from flood-related disruptions earlier this year. Also, higher realized prices and solid cost control across our diverse operating platform helped to expand our per-ton operating margins versus a year ago.”

Key Stats:

The company has enjoyed double-digit year-over-year percentage revenue growth for the past five quarters. Over that span, the company has averaged growth of 30.2%, with the biggest boost coming in the most recent quarter when revenue rose 47.1% from the year earlier quarter.

Gross margin shrank 2.5 percentage points to 23%. The contraction appeared to be driven by increased costs, which rose 52% from the year earlier quarter while revenue rose 47.1%.

Looking Forward: Over the past ninety days, the average estimate for the first quarter of the next fiscal year has fallen from 71 cents per share to 45 cents, indicating that analysts are growing pessisimistic about the company’s performance next quarter. At $1.16 per share, the average estimate for the fiscal year has fallen from $1.19 ninety days ago.

(Company fundamentals provided by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)

Don’t Miss These Additional Hot Stories:

Investors Wake Up to the Return of Dividends

Do We Know If the Housing Market Has Hit Bottom?

Should Investors Reconsider Cash and Gold as Safe-Havens?

To contact the reporter on this story: Derek Hoffman at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com