Aqua America Inc. (WTR - Free Report) reported second-quarter 2018 earnings per share of 37 cents, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny. The reported earnings were 8.8% higher than 34 cents recorded in the year-ago quarter.
The year-over-year earnings growth was due to organic improvement and the new rates in its service territories.
Second-quarter revenues of $211.9 million lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $216 million by 1.9%. However, revenues were up 4.2% year over year. The year-over-year improvement in total revenues was due to infrastructure surcharge and increase in regulated revenues.
Highlights of the Release
The company continues to expand its operation through strategic acquisitions. Year to date, the company signed or closed eight municipal acquisitions, which will add nearly 27,000 customers to its existing customer base. These acquisitions are going to have a positive impact on the performance of the company.
Year to date, Aqua America's state subsidiaries in Indiana, Illinois, New Jersey, North Carolina, Texas, Pennsylvania and Ohio have received rate awards or infrastructure surcharges amounting to $20 million. The company currently has rate proceedings pending in Indiana, North Carolina, Virginia and Ohio worth $8.8 million.
Operation and maintenance expenses increased 5.6% year over year to $73.5 million.
Interest expenses increased 10.7% to $23.7 million from $21.3 million in the year-ago quarter.
Current assets were $189.4 million as of Jun 30, 2018, down from $131.3 million on Dec 31, 2017. Long-term debt was $2,181.4 million as of Jun 30, 2018, higher than $2,007.7 million on Dec 31, 2017.
Aqua America reiterated its 2018 earnings in the range of $1.37-$1.42 per share. It expects customer base to expand 2-3% in 2018. The company plans to invest $500 million in 2018. This is part of the investment plan of nearly $1.4 billion through 2020.
Other Water Utility Releases
Here are some other players from the water utility space that have reported second-quarter earnings:
American Water Works Co. (AWK - Free Report) beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 2.3%, SJW Group (SJW - Free Report) reported in-line earnings, while California Water Service Group Holding (CWT - Free Report) missed the same by 20.6%.
Currently, Aqua America carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
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