Northwestern Earnings: Here’s Why Investors are Happy Now

Northwestern Corp. (NYSE:NWE) delivered a profit and beat Wall Street’s expectations, BUT came up short on beating the revenue expectation. The revenue miss is a negative sign to shareholders seeking high growth out of the company. Shares are up 0.89%.

Northwestern Corp. Earnings Cheat Sheet

Results: Adjusted Earnings Per Share increased 273.81% to $1.57 in the quarter versus EPS of $0.93 in the year-earlier quarter.

Revenue: Decreased 0.86% to $280.77 million from the year-earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: Northwestern Corp. reported adjusted EPS income of $1.57 per share. By that measure, the company beat the mean analyst estimate of $0.76. It missed the average revenue estimate of $287.4 million.

Quoting Management: “Our net income and cash flows from operations improved in 2012, compared with 2011. Those results were driven by higher gross margin, primarily due to a favorable arbitration decision, partially offset by higher operating expenses, an impairment charge related to our decision to shelve the Mountain States Transmission Intertie (MSTI) project and higher income taxes,” said Bob Rowe, Chief Executive Officer. “Our continued focus is to remain committed to funding our distribution system infrastructure project and transmission infrastructure improvements while we seek additional regulated energy supply resources to provide our customers long-term price stability and resource adequacy.”

Key Stats (on next page)…

Revenue increased 19.04% from $235.87 million in the previous quarter. EPS increased 273.81% from $0.42 in the previous quarter.

Looking Forward: Analysts have a neutral outlook for the company’s next-quarter performance. Over the past three months, the average estimate for next quarter’s earnings is a profit of $0.91 and has not changed. For the current year, the average estimate is a profit of $2.35, which is the same with that ninety days ago.

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(Company fundamentals provided by Xignite Financials. Email any earnings discrepancies to earnings [at] wallstcheatsheet.com)