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Martin Marietta (MLM) Misses on Q2 Earnings, Margins Improve

Martin Marietta Materials, Inc.'s MLM second-quarter 2017 adjusted earnings per share of $2.25 missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.38 by 5.5%. However, earnings increased 18.4% from the prior-year quarter.
 
Total revenue (including freight and delivery) of $1.06 billion surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.01 million by about 5% and increased 8.8% from the year-ago quarter. Freight and delivery revenues were $67.2 million, up 8.6% year over year.

Segment Discussion

The Building Materials business includes aggregates, cement, ready mixed concrete, asphalt and paving product lines.

Building Materials’ net sales grew 8.8% to $931.7 million on the back of pricing and volume gains across all product lines.

Aggregates’ net sales grew 5.7% to $578.4 million. Ready Mixed Concrete net sales rose 12.6% to $241.9 million and Cement net sales of $99.0 million increased 13.3%. Net sales at the Asphalt and Paving business were $112.0 million, compared with $88.1 million in the prior-year quarter.

Shipments (volume) in the aggregates product line increased 2%. Geographically, Mid-America and West Groups aggregate volumes improved 2% and 3.6%, respectively, whereas the Southeast Group reported a 3.2% decrease in volumes owing to wet weather conditions in Georgia.

Revenues at the Magnesia Specialties segment, which includes magnesium oxide, magnesium hydroxide and dolomite lime products, increased 9.7% year over year to $64.6 million, driven by strength in the chemicals and lime product lines.

Steel capacity utilization increased approximately 74.4%, compared to 72% recorded in the prior-year quarter.

Martin Marietta Materials, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

 

Margins

Total adjusted gross margin (excluding freight and delivery revenues) increased 50 basis points (bps) to 27.5%.

Building Materials business' gross margin (excluding freight and delivery revenues) of 26.8% rose 30 bps year over year while that of Magnesia Specialties Business was 36.6%, down 30 bps.

Financials

Martin Marietta ended the quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $36.7 million, as of Jun 30, 2017, compared with $28.6 million as of Jun 30, 2016, and $50 million as on Dec 31, 2016.

As of Jun 30, 2017, there were 62.8 million shares of Martin Marietta’s common stock outstanding and 14.6 million shares remaining under the current repurchase authorization.

2017 Guidance Reaffirmed

Net sales expectations are maintained in the band of $3.75 billion to $3.95 billion.

Aggregates Product line net sales are projected in the range of $2.2–$2.3 billion. Aggregates product line volume is expected to rise 4–5.5%.

Cement Product Line net sales are estimated in the range of $380–$400 million.

Ready Mixed Concrete and Asphalt/Paving Product Lines net sales are expected in the band of $1.3–$1.4 billion.

Magnesia Specialties Business net sales are likely to come in between $235 billion and $240 billion.

The non-residential market is expected to increase in a low to mid-single digit range. Meanwhile, the residential market is expected to grow in a mid to high-single digit range. ChemRock/Rail market volumes are likely to remain stable.

Zacks Rank & Peer Releases

Martin Marietta carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell).

D.R. Horton, Inc. DHI came up with yet another stellar show in the third quarter of fiscal 2017. Both earnings and revenues beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate, courtesy of a solid housing market scenario.

NVR, Inc.’s NVR second-quarter 2017 earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 22.9%. Total revenue (Homebuilding & Mortgage Banking fees) was $1.54 billion in the quarter (up 11% year over year), driven by higher housing revenues and mortgage-banking fees.

Upcoming Sector Release

Louisiana-Pacific Corp. LPX is scheduled to release its quarterly numbers on Aug 1. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings is pegged at 61 cents, highlighting an increase of 116.7% on a year-over-year basis.

You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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Louisiana-Pacific Corporation (LPX): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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NVR, Inc. (NVR): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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