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Hertz (HTZ) Q1 Loss Wider than Expected, Revenues Decline

Hertz Global Holdings Inc. HTZ reported adjusted loss per share of 12 cents per share for first-quarter 2016 against break-even results recorded in the year-ago quarter. Also, the loss was wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 3 cents.

On a reported basis, Hertz Global posted loss per share of 12 cents compared with a loss of 15 cents reported in the prior-year quarter.

Net revenue dropped nearly 6% year over year to $2,311 million due to lower U.S. and International car rental revenues as well as worldwide equipment rental revenue, coupled with an unfavorable currency impact. The top line also fell short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2,354 million.

Segment Performance

Revenues for the U.S. Car Rental segment fell 8% year over year to $1,406 million in the first quarter due to a 10% fall in pricing or Total Revenue per Transaction Day (“RPD”), offset by a 2% rise in transaction days.

Quarterly revenues for the International Car Rental segment came in at $433 million, reflecting a year-over-year decline of about 1%, mainly owing to the negative impact of foreign currency. Excluding currency impact, revenues rose 6%, attributable to a 2% rise in constant-currency Total RPD and 3% growth in transaction days.

Revenues for the Worldwide Equipment Rental segment slipped 8% year over year to $328 million but increased 12% on a currency-neutral basis and excluding the impact of soft upstream oil and gas markets and the disposal of its equipment rental business in France and Spain. The growth was backed by the addition of new accounts as well as a 1% rise in pricing in non-oil and gas markets.

During the quarter, revenues from the All Other Operations segment rose 1% from the prior-year period to $144 million.

Financial Update

The company ended the first quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $857 million, total debt of $16,072 million, and shareholders’ equity of $2,038 million.

In Mar 2016, the company agreed to sell a portion of its holdings in CAR Inc. (China Auto Rental) to UCAR Technology, reducing its equity holdings in the CAR Inc. to 1.7% of CAR’s total shares. Per the deal, Hertz Global also extended its existing commercial agreement with CAR Inc. to 2023. This transaction is valued at $240 million in cash.

Outlook

Despite dismal first-quarter results, Hertz reiterated its guidance for 2016. Also, the company stated that it is on track with the separation of Hertz Equipment Rental (HERC) from Hertz Global and expects to complete the same by mid-2016.

This largest general use car rental company expects corporate EBITDA for the Hertz Global business in the range of $1.6–$1.7 billion. For the Worldwide Equipment Rental segment, corporate EBITDA is projected in the range of $600–$650 million.

Further, the company retained its recently lowered Domestic RAC revenue growth guidance of flat to down 1.5%. The company expects U.S. RAC depreciation per unit per month in the range of $290–$300 million and U.S. RAC capacity growth between -3% and -2%. Net non-fleet capital expenditure for 2016 is expected in the range of $200–$225 million.

The company expects corporate interest expense of $330–$345 million in 2016 and free cash flow in the range of $400–$500 million.

Also, Hertz expects earnings per share in the range of 95 cents to $1.10. Earnings guidance for the full year is based on expected shares outstanding of 424 million and an effective tax rate of 37%.

Zacks Rank

Hertz Global currently holds a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell). Some better-ranked stocks in the business services industry are PRGX Global, Inc. PRGX, Vectrus Inc. VEC and Viad Corp VVI, each with a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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