FLIR Systems Inc. Earnings: Streak of Four Straight Quarters of Shrinking Margins Broken as Net Income Rises

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component FLIR Systems Inc. (NASDAQ:FLIR) reported net income above Wall Street’s expectations for the fourth quarter. FLIR Systems designs and manufactures thermal imaging systems used for a variety of applications in commercial, industrial and government markets across the globe.

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FLIR Systems Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Fourth Quarter

Results: Net income for the aerospace/defense products and services company rose to $76.1 million (48 cents per share) vs. $69.8 million (43 cents per share) in the same quarter a year earlier. This marks a rise of 9% from the year earlier quarter.

Revenue: Fell 7.4% to $405.2 million from the year earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: FLIR Systems Inc. reported adjusted net income of 49 cents per share. By that measure, the company beat the mean estimate of 45 cents per share. It fell short of the average revenue estimate of $436.1 million.

Quoting Management: “The fourth quarter showcased our ability to adapt and persevere through a challenging macro environment. During the quarter, we expanded margins — gross, operating, and net income — to their highest levels in over a year and cash flow from operations reached its highest quarterly total ever,” said Earl Lewis, President and CEO of FLIR. “Our focus on operational efficiency and innovation throughout 2011 enabled us to drive profitability and has positioned the company for success in the future.”

Key Stats:

The company has now beaten estimates the last two quarters. In the third quarter, it topped expectations with net income of 43 cents versus a mean estimate of net income of 37 cents per share.

The company has now seen net income rise in two straight quarters. In the third quarter, net income rose 2.8% from the year earlier.

Looking Forward: The outlook for the company’s results in the upcoming quarter is unfavorable. The average estimate for the first quarter of the next fiscal year is 37 cents per share, down from 38 cents ninety days ago. The average estimate for the fiscal year is $1.53 per share, down from $1.55 ninety days ago.

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

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To contact the reporter on this story: Derek Hoffman at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at