Kimberly-Clark Earnings Cheat Sheet: Margins Shrink on Rising Costs, Net Income Falls

Rising costs hurt S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Kimberly-Clark Corporation (NYSE:KMB) in the second quarter as profit dropped from a year earlier. Kimberly-Clark Corporation manufactures and markets a range of mostly paper-based consumer products.

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Kimberly-Clark Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Second Quarter

Results: Net income for the personal products company fell to $408 million ($1.03 per share) vs. $498 million ($1.20 per share) a year earlier. This is a decline of 18.1% from the year earlier quarter.

Revenue: Rose 8.3% to $5.26 billion from the year earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: KMB reported adjusted net income of $1.18 per share. By that measure, the company beat the mean estimate of $1.15 per share. It beat the average revenue estimate of $5.13 billion.

Quoting Management: Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Thomas J. Falk said, “Our organic sales grew in the second quarter in line with our full-year plan, as we continue to benefit from innovation and targeted growth initiatives. We are gaining market share in a number of businesses and are launching additional product innovations to further improve our brands. We also continue to deliver significant ongoing cost savings and generate strong cash flow. Although adjusted earnings per share were down slightly in the second quarter versus last year, we delivered sequential improvement in most key metrics compared to the first quarter, which gives us added confidence in our performance in the back half of the year.”

Key Stats:

Gross margin shrank 4.2 percentage points to 29.6%. The contraction appeared to be driven by increased costs, which rose 15.2% from the year earlier quarter while revenue rose 8.3%.

Revenue has risen the past four quarters. Revenue increased 4% to $5.03 billion in the first quarter. The figure rose 1.9% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year from the year earlier and climbed 1.3% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year from the year-ago quarter.

The company topped expectations last quarter after falling short of forecasts in the first quarter with net income of $1.09 versus a mean estimate of net income of $1.18 per share.

Net income has dropped 4.6% year over year on average across the last five quarters. Performance was hurt by a 19.4% decline in the third quarter of the last fiscal year from the year earlier quarter.

Competitors to Watch: The Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE:PG), Cardinal Health, Inc. (NYSE:CAH), Church & Dwight (NYSE:CHD), Colgate-Palmolive (NYSE:CL), Clorox (NYSE:CLX), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), Zep (NYSE:ZEP) and Avon Products (NYSE:AVP).

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(Source: Xignite Financials)