It has been about a month since the last earnings report for Canadian Pacific (CP - Free Report) . Shares have lost about 4% in that time frame, outperforming the S&P 500.
Will the recent negative trend continue leading up to its next earnings release, or is Canadian Pacific due for a breakout? Before we dive into how investors and analysts have reacted as of late, let's take a quick look at the most recent earnings report in order to get a better handle on the important catalysts.
Canadian Pacific Q2 Earnings Beat, Revenues Miss
The company’s earnings (excluding 65 cents from non-recurring items) of $3.21 per share (C$5.17) surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3.19. Moreover, quarterly earnings increased more than 30% year over year. The bottom line was aided by the company’s prudent cost management, courtesy of the precision scheduled railroading model.
Quarterly revenues of $1,478 million (C$1.98 billion), however, fell short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1,502.8 million. However, the top line expanded year over year. Impressive freight revenues led to the year over year top line improvement.
Freight revenues rose 13% year over year and contributed 97.7% to the top line. Notably, the company’s freight segment consists of Grain (up 13%), Coal (up 5%), Potash (up 17%), Fertilizers and sulfur (up 15%), Forest products (up 13%), Energy, chemicals and plastics (up 24%), Metals, minerals and consumer products (flat), Automotive (up 14%) and Intermodal (up 12%). In the reported quarter, total freight revenues per revenue ton-miles (RTMs) were up 7% year over year. Also, total freight revenues per car load increased 7% from the year-ago quarter’s figure.
Operating income increased 31% in the quarter under review. Operating expenses increased marginally year over year. Operating ratio (operating expenses as a percentage of revenues on an adjusted basis) improved to 58.4% from 64.2% in the prior-year quarter driven by this railroad operator’s efforts to control costs. Capital spending was C$683 million in the reported quarter.
The company exited the second quarter with cash and cash equivalents of C$45 million compared with C$61 million at the end of 2018. Long-term debt amounted to C$8,266 million compared with C$8,190 million in December 2018.
For full-year 2019, Canadian Pacific expects RTM to increase between 4% and 5%. Moreover, earnings per share in the third and fourth quarters of 2019 are expected to increase in double digits. Capital expenditures are still projected around C$1.6 billion for the current year.
How Have Estimates Been Moving Since Then?
It turns out, estimates review have trended upward during the past month.
At this time, Canadian Pacific has a nice Growth Score of B, though it is lagging a bit on the Momentum Score front with a C. Following the exact same course, the stock was allocated a grade of C on the value side, putting it in the middle 20% for this investment strategy.
Overall, the stock has an aggregate VGM Score of C. If you aren't focused on one strategy, this score is the one you should be interested in.
Estimates have been broadly trending upward for the stock, and the magnitude of these revisions looks promising. It comes with little surprise Canadian Pacific has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). We expect an above average return from the stock in the next few months.