Golar LNG Limited (GLNG - Free Report) incurred a loss (excluding 4 cents from non-recurring items) of 37 cents in first-quarter 2019, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 26 cents. Moreover, the amount of loss increased year over year.
Total operating revenues amounted to $97.8 million, which surpassed the consensus mark of $88.9 million. Also, the top line surged 47.7% year over year.
Of the total revenues, Liquefaction services revenues accounted for the bulk (47.7%) of the company’s top line. While Time and voyage charter revenues decreased 18.6%, Time charter revenues — collaborative arrangement — increased 18.4%. Revenues from Vessel and other management fees declined 10.2% year over year. Time Charter Equivalent ("TCE") earnings decreased to $39,300 per day in the quarter under discussion compared with $77,600 in the prior quarter.
The company reported operating income of $28.86 million in the first quarter compared with $6.43 million in the year-ago period. Total operating expenses soared 70.8% in the quarter to $125.3 million. Vessel operating expenses jumped 69.7% to $31.25 million. This downside was attributable to additional crew, maintenance and repairs expenses.
The company exited the first quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $212.67 million compared with $217.83 million at December 2018 end. As of Mar 31, 2019, its long-term debt totaled $1.59 billion compared with $1.83 billion as of Dec 31, 2018.
The company’s board has approved a quarterly dividend payment of 15 cents per share. The dividend will be paid on Jul 3, 2019 to shareholders of record as on Jun 13, 2019.
The company’s board has decided on a spin-off of its Trifuel Diesel Electric ("TFDE") LNG carrier business so as to focus primarily on FLNG and its downstream assets. Further, at March-end, the company entered into a contract with LNG Hrvtska for the conversion and sale of Golar Viking. The sale is anticipated to fetch the company $40 million in net positive cash.
Golar LNG anticipates commissioning of the Sergipe power station to be completed in the second half of this year. Additionally, Golar Power (a subsidiary of Golar LNG) plans to develop the downstream small-scale market in Brazil, which is expected to boost earnings from 2020 or 2021 onward.
The company’s management is positive about its growth potential on the back of an LNG growth rate of approximately 10% pa, a solid rise in contracted earnings, a sound balance sheet and other factors.
Zacks Rank & Key Picks
Golar LNG carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the broader Transportation sector are SkyWest, Inc. (SKYW - Free Report) , GATX Corp. (GATX - Free Report) and Fly Leasing Limited (FLY - Free Report) . While SkyWest and Fly Leasing sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), GATX carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Shares of SkyWest and GATX have gained more than 35% and 8%, respectively, so far this year. Meanwhile, Fly Leasing boasts an impressive earnings surprise history, outperforming the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the trailing four quarters, the average being 41.3%.
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