International Paper Co. Earnings: Profit Down

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component International Paper Co. (NYSE:IP) reported its results for the fourth quarter. International Paper is a global paper and packaging company with operations in North America, Europe, Latin America, Russia, Asia and North Africa.

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International Paper Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Fourth Quarter

Results: Net income for International Paper Co. fell to $257 million (59 cents per share) vs. $316 million (74 cents per share) a year earlier. This is a decline of 18.7% from the year earlier quarter.

Revenue: Fell 2.5% to $6.37 billion from the year earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: International Paper Co. fell short of the mean analyst estimate of 61 cents per share. It fell short of the average revenue estimate of $6.5 billion.

Quoting Management: “Margin expansion across our global operations, as well as growth in emerging markets, contributed to a solid fourth quarter and drove IP’s performance throughout 2011,” said John Faraci, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “International Paper has consistently delivered strong results for the sixth consecutive quarter since the global downturn, generating our best financial results in nearly two decades. Sustaining positive momentum in an uneven global economy is challenging, but over the course of the full year ahead we remain confident in our ability to continue to execute at a high level.”

Key Stats:

The company fell short of forecasts after beating estimates in the previous two quarters. In the third quarter, it topped the mark by 12 cents, and in the second quarter, it was ahead by 14 cents.

Revenue has fallen in the past two quarters. In the third quarter, revenue declined 1.3% to $6.63 billion from the year earlier quarter.

Looking Forward: Analysts have a more positive outlook for the company’s next quarter performance. Over the past month, the average estimate for the first quarter of the next fiscal year has gone up from 63 cents per share to 64 cents. In the past month, the average estimate for the fiscal year has fallen from $3.09 per share to $3.07 abs.

(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 staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

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

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