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Williams (WMB) Reports Weak Earnings in Q1, Stock Slides

North American energy firm, Williams Companies Inc. WMB reported weak first-quarter 2016 results owing to a decline in the natural gas liquids (NGL) margin. Following the announcement, the company fell nearly 3% in after trading hours on the NYSE.

The company reported adjusted earnings from continuing operations of 3 cents per share, widely missing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 10 cents. The bottom line also came in lower than the prior-year figure of 16 cents.

For the quarter ended Mar 31, Williams Companies reported revenues of $1,660 million, again missing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2,060 million and declining from the year-ago quarter revenues of $1,716 million.    

Segmental Analysis

Williams Partners: This segment reported adjusted operating profit of $1,060 million in the quarter, up 16% from $917 million in the year-ago quarter. Increased fee-based revenues and improved olefins margins from Geismar plant production drove the results. A partial dampener came in the form of a decrease in NGL margin.

Williams NGL & Petchem Services: The unit incurred adjusted operating loss of $14 million, wider than the year-ago quarter loss of $5 million. Significant rise in total segment cost and expenses led to the underperformance.

Other: The segment posted adjusted operating profit of $10 million, up from the year-ago quarter profit of $6 million.

Operating and Maintenance Expenses

Operating and maintenance expenses were recorded at $391 million, slightly higher than $387 million in the first quarter of 2015.

Capital Expenditure & Balance Sheet

During the reported quarter, Williams Companies’ capital expenditure came in at $513 million. As of Mar 31, 2016, the company had long-term debt of $23,701 million, representing a debt-to-capitalization ratio of 81.3%. Williams Companies has a cash balance of about $164 million.

Zacks Rank & Other Picks

Williams Companies currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold), implying that the stock will perform in line with the broader U.S. equity market over the next one to three months.

Some better-ranked players in the energy sector include PetroChina Co. Ltd. PTR, Seadrill Partners LLC SDLP and Braskem S.A. BAK. Each of these stocks sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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BRASKEM SA (BAK): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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