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Rising Operating Costs to Clip Luminar (LAZR) Q1 Earnings

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Luminar Technologies (LAZR - Free Report) is scheduled to release first-quarter 2022 results on May 5, after the closing bell. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the bottom line is pegged at a loss of 13 cents per share for the quarter. The consensus mark for Luminar’s first-quarter loss per share has been unchanged in the past 30 days.

Luminar made its NASDAQ debut on Dec 3, 2020 upon completion of a merger with a special purpose acquisition company, Gores Metropoulos, Inc. In the last reported quarter, this lidar manufacturer incurred a net loss per share of 12 cents, narrower than the consensus mark of a loss of 15 cents. Over the trailing four quarters, Luminar surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate twice for as many misses, with the average surprise being 9.2%. 

Luminar Technologies, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

Luminar Technologies, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

Luminar Technologies, Inc. price-eps-surprise | Luminar Technologies, Inc. Quote

Things to Note

Luminar’s proprietary software designed to unlock full lidar capabilities enhances automakers’ ability to deliver high-speed highway autonomy at a commercial series production scale. This has been helping the company secure business wins, which are expected to have boosted first-quarter revenues. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Luminar’s revenues for the to-be-reported quarter is $9.93 million, indicating an increase of 86.9% on a year-over-year basis. But the metric denotes a deterioration from $12.3 million registered in the last-reported quarter.

With the company still being in the nascent stage, high technology and product development expenses are likely to have dented Q1 margins. In the last reported quarter, Luminar recorded operating expenses of $63.4 million, skyrocketing 144% year over year. Discouragingly, the firm expects higher spending this year from 2021 levels, which doesn’t augur well for the upcoming results. Also, in the last quarter, the company guided FY22 revenues below expectations at around $40 million.

All in all, low revenues coupled with escalating R&D, sales and marketing, and G&A expenses are anticipated to have eroded first-quarter margins.

What the Zacks Model Says

Our proven Zacks model does not conclusively predict an earnings beat for Luminar this time around. The combination of a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) increases the odds of an earnings beat. That is not the case here.

Earnings ESP: Luminar has an Earnings ESP of 0.00%. This is because the Most Accurate Estimate is pegged at par with the Zacks Consensus Estimate. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they’re reported with our Earnings ESP Filter.

Zacks Rank: LAZR currently carries a Zacks Rank of 3.

You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

What’s in Store for Velodyne Lidar?

Luminar’s closest peer Velodyne Lidar (VLDR - Free Report) is also set to report first-quarter 2022 results on May 5, after the closing bell. Our model does not conclusively predict an earnings beat for Velodyne. This is because the company doesn’t possess the right combination of a positive ESP and a favorable Zacks Rank.

Velodyne has an Earnings ESP of 0.00% and a Zacks Rank #3. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its first-quarter loss is pegged at 20 cents a share, indicating a wider loss from 16 cents incurred in the year-ago period. Over the trailing four quarters, VLDR topped earnings estimates once, missed on two occasions and matched on the other, with the average negative surprise being 6.34%.

Stay on top of upcoming earnings announcements with the Zacks Earnings Calendar.

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