Southwestern Energy Co. Earnings Cheat Sheet: Profitable Quarter Accelerates Growth

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Southwestern Energy Co. (NYSE:SWN) reported its results for the third quarter. Southwestern Energy is an independent energy company that, through its subsidiaries, explores, develops and produces natural gas and crude oil.

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Southwestern Energy Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Third Quarter

Results: Net income for the independent oil and gas company rose to $175.2 million (50 cents per share) vs. $160.7 million (46 cents per share) in the same quarter a year earlier. This marks a rise of 9% from the year earlier quarter.

Revenue: Rose 12.5% to $767.3 million from the year earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: SWN fell in line with the mean analyst estimate of 50 cents per share. Analysts were expecting revenue of $766.1 million.

Quoting Management: “We had another excellent quarter,” stated Steve Mueller, President and Chief Executive Officer. “The increases in our earnings and cash flow were primarily driven by our production growth and our vertical integration and focus on costs continue to be key advantages for us. As a result of our Fayetteville and Marcellus projects, our production guidance has again been increased to approximately 496-500 Bcfe for the full year of 2011, which represents approximately a 23% increase over 2010 levels. With one of the lowest cost structures in our industry, a large inventory of wells to drill in the Fayetteville and Marcellus Shales and a growing New Ventures acreage position, we are well-positioned to provide profitable growth in production and reserves over the next several years.”

Key Stats:

Revenue has risen the past four quarters. Revenue increased 29.7% to $765.2 million in the second quarter. The figure rose 1.2% in the first quarter from the year earlier and climbed 7.4% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year from the year-ago quarter.

The company fell in line with estimates last quarter after beating forecasts in the previous quarter with net income of 48 cents versus a mean estimate of net income of 43 cents per share.

The company has now seen net income rise in two straight quarters. In the second quarter, net income rose 37.2% from the year earlier.

Looking Forward: Over the past sixty days, the outlook for the company’s performance next quarter has become increasingly unfavorable. The average estimate for the fourth quarter is 52 cents per share, a drop from 55 cents. The average estimate for the fiscal year is $1.89 per share, a rise from $1.80 ninety days ago.

Competitors to Watch: Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO), Williams Companies, Inc. (NYSE:WMB), Questar Corporation (NYSE:STR), Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX), Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM), EQT Corporation (NYSE:EQT), Hess Corp. (NYSE:HES), ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP), Double Eagle Petroleum Co. (NASDAQ:DBLE), and Occidental Petroleum Corp. (NYSE:OXY).

Investing Insights: Here’s Why Chipotle’s Stock Keeps Winning.

(Source: Xignite Financials)