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Air Products (APD) Q4 Earnings & Revenues Top Estimates

Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. APD beat earnings expectations in fourth-quarter fiscal 2017 (ended Sep 30, 2017).
 
The industrial gases giant logged fourth-quarter adjusted earnings of $1.76 per share, up 18% from the year-ago quarter. Earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.69. 
 
Net income from continuing operations, for the reported quarter, rose 64% year over year to $474 million or $2.15 per share. Cost of sales for the reported quarter rose roughly 14.7% year over year to around $1.5 billion. Selling and administrative expenses increased 7.2% year over year to $187.5 million.
 
Revenues rose 13% year over year to $2.2 billion in the reported quarter, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.09 billion. A 9% increase in volumes, 2% rise in price and 1% favorable energy pass-through and currency contributed to revenue growth in the quarter.
 
FY17 Results 
 
The company reported net income from continuing operations of $1.1 billion or $5.16 per share for fiscal 2017, up 3% year over year. For fiscal 2017, adjusted earnings came in at $6.31 per share, up 12% from the previous year. 
 
Sales rose 9% year over year to $8.2 billion for fiscal 2017 on higher volumes, higher energy pass-through and improved pricing.

Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
 
 
Revenues from the Industrial Gases — America segment grew 8.6% year over year to $953 million in the reported quarter, supported by 7% increase in volumes along with strong hydrogen demand. 
 
Sales from the Industrial Gases — Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) segment rose 24.3% year over year to $515 million due to 18% higher volumes and 5% favorable currency.
 
Sales from the Industrial Gases — Asia segment went up 23% year over year to $552 million on the back of 17% increase in volumes and 6% rise in price. 
 
Financial Position
 
Air Products ended fourth-quarter fiscal 2017 with cash and cash equivalents of $3,273.6 million, a 153.1% year-over-year surge. Total long-term debt fell around 13% year over year to $3,402.4 million.
 
Outlook                                                                     
 
Air Products expects adjusted earnings per share of $1.60-$1.70 for first-quarter fiscal 2018, up 9-16% from the year-ago quarter. For fiscal 2018, Air Products expects adjusted earnings per share of $6.85-$7.05, up 9-12% year over year. 
 
Capital expenditure for fiscal 2018 is expected to be in the range of $1-$1.2 billion.
 
Price Performance
 
Air Products’ shares have moved up 15.9% over a year, underperforming the industry’s 33.5% gain.
 
 
 
Zacks Rank & Other Stocks to Consider
 
Air Products currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
 
Some other top-ranked companies in the chemical space are FMC Corporation FMC, Huntsman Corporation HUN and Albemarle Corporation ALB.
 
FMC Corp. has an expected long-term earnings growth rate of 11.3% and sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks Rank #1 stocks here.
 
Huntsman has an expected long-term earnings growth rate of 7% and flaunts a Zacks Rank #1.
 
Albemarle has an expected long-term earnings growth rate of 14.8% and carries a Zacks Rank #2.
 
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