Ball Corporation Earnings Cheat Sheet: Margins Expand Again, Profit Rises

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL) reported its results for the second quarter. Ball Corporation supplies metal and plastic packaging to the household products, food and beverage industries as well as aerospace and other technologies and services to governmental and commercial customers.

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Ball Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Second Quarter

Results: Net income for Ball Corporation rose to $143.1 million (84 cents per share) vs. $69 million (37 cents per share) in the same quarter a year earlier. This is a more than twofold rise from the year earlier quarter.

Revenue: Rose 15.1% to $2.31 billion from the year earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: BLL reported adjusted net income of 85 cents per share. By that measure, the company fell short of mean estimate of 86 cents per share. It fell short of the average revenue estimate of $2.42 billion.

Quoting Management: “Ball reported solid results, driven largely by demand for metal packaging in China and Europe, exceptional aerospace program performance and the impact of Ball’s strategic expansion into extruded aluminum packaging,” said John A. Hayes, president and chief executive officer. “Each of our segments realized year-over-year improvement. Our capital projects across the corporation are on track and on budget, and when completed will allow us to further align with customer demand and leverage global growth opportunities in 2011 and beyond.”

Key Stats:

Last quarter marked the fifth consecutive quarter of gross margins expanding as the company’s gross margin expanded 0.2 percentage point to 18.4% from the year earlier quarter. Over that span, margins have grown on average one percentage points per quarter on a year-over-year basis.

The company has now seen net income rise in three straight quarters. In the first quarter, net income rose 15.1% and in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year, the figure rose 13.3%.

Revenue has risen the past four quarters. Revenue increased 17.9% to $2.01 billion in the first quarter. The figure rose 7% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year from the year earlier and climbed 3.3% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year from the year-ago quarter.

The company fell short of forecasts after beating estimates in the previous two quarters. In the first quarter, it topped the mark by 10 cents, and in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year, it was ahead by one cent.

Competitors to Watch: Crown Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:CCK), Silgan Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ:SLGN), Rexam PLC (REXMY), Bway Holding Company (BWY), and Dominguez y Cia., S.A. (NYSE:DOM).

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(Source: Xignite Financials)