MDU Resources Group Inc. (MDU - Free Report) delivered fourth-quarter 2019 operating earnings of 47 cents per share, which increased 20.5% from the year-ago quarter’s level. The upside was driven by exceptional performance of all business lines.
In 2019, the company posted operating earnings of $1.69 per share compared with $1.39 in 2018.
Total revenues in the fourth quarter were $1,378.2 million, up 14% from $1,209.9 million in the year-ago quarter.
Operating revenues in the electric, natural gas distribution and regulated pipeline as well as the midstream segments increased 9% to $394 million. Revenues in the non-regulated pipeline and midstream, construction materials and contracting, construction services and other segments increased 16% to $984.2 million.
In 2019, the company generated revenues of $5,336.8 million compared with $4,531.6 million in 2018.
Highlights of the Release
In the quarter under review, operating expenses amounted to $1,248 million, up 14.3% from the prior-year quarter’s figure of $1,091.6 million.
Operating income was $130.2 million, up 10% year over year.
The company incurred interest expenses of $24.5 million, up from $22.4 million in the prior-year quarter.
As of Dec 31, 2019, the construction services business had backlog of $1.14 billion, up 22% from the year-ago tally.
The construction materials business had backlog of $693 million, down from a backlog of $706 million in the year-ago period.
Total debt amounted to $2,243 million as of Dec 31, 2019, up from $2,109 million as of Dec 31, 2018.
The company’s net cash flow from operating activities in 2019 was $542.3 million, up from $499.9 million in 2018.
MDU Resources expects 2020 earnings per share in the range of $1.65-$1.85, whose mid-point of $1.75 is higher than the current Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.70.
The company plans to invest $2,926 million through 2020-2024.
MDU Resources carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Other Utility Releases
Xcel Energy (XEL - Free Report) posted fourth-quarter 2019 operating earnings of 56 cents per share, which beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 53 cents by 5.6%.
NextEra Energy (NEE - Free Report) reported fourth-quarter 2019 adjusted earnings of $1.44 per share, which lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.54 by 6.5%.
CMS Energy Corporation (CMS - Free Report) reported fourth-quarter 2019 adjusted earnings of 68 cents, which missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 69 cents.
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