Charting United Rentals' Earnings

United Rentals (NYS: URI) reported earnings on Jan. 25. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Dec. 31 (Q4), United Rentals beat expectations on revenue and crushed expectations on earnings per share.

Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue expanded significantly, and earnings per share improved.

Margins increased across the board.

Revenue details
United Rentals reported revenue of $746.0 million. The nine analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ hoped for a top line of $689.7 million. Sales were 25% higher than the prior-year quarter's $597.0 million.


Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions.

EPS details
Non-GAAP EPS came in at $0.82. The 12 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ predicted $0.58 per share on the same basis. GAAP EPS were $0.39 for Q4 versus -$0.36 per share for the prior-year quarter.


Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Figures may be non-GAAP to maintain comparability with estimates.

Margin details
For the quarter, gross margin was 51.7%, 2,240 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 19.8%, 940 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 3.9%, 740 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $586.1 million. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.00.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $2.84 billion. The average EPS estimate is $2.49.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a two-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 186 members out of 209 rating the stock outperform, and 23 members rating it underperform. Among 63 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 54 give United Rentals a green thumbs-up, and nine give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on United Rentals is outperform, with an average price target of $33.45.

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At the time this article was published Seth Jayson had no position in any company mentioned here at the time of publication. You can view his stock holdings here. He is co-advisor ofMotley Fool Hidden Gems, which provides new small-cap ideas every month, backed by a real-money portfolio. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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