How Is AT&T Positioned in 2018?
AT&T’s outlook on consolidated results for 2018
AT&T (T) started the year on a weak note and disappointed investors with sluggish first quarter financial results. The telecom company reported lower-than-expected numbers, and it missed revenue and earnings expectations.
Despite these weak results, AT&T’s management reiterated its fiscal 2018 guidance and expects adjusted EPS (earnings per share) of ~$3.50, which includes impacts of tax reform and its new revenue recognition standard.
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AT&T forecasts its capital expenditures and FCF (free cash flow) to be ~$21.0 billion and ~$21.0 billion, respectively, in fiscal 2018. The company’s management expects its 2018 effective tax rate to be ~23.0%. The lower tax rate is expected to grow cash from operations by ~$3.0 billion in 2018 compared to its pre–tax reform expectations.
In the first quarter, AT&T reported adjusted EPS of $0.85. While the company missed its earnings estimate of $0.87, its adjusted EPS rose ~14.9% YoY (year-over-year) from $0.74.
AT&T’s revenues of $38.0 billion in the first quarter lagged behind Wall Street analysts’ estimate of $39.3 billion and were marginally lower than the $39.4 billion in revenues seen in the first quarter of 2017.
AT&T’s peer comparison of EPS
In comparison, Verizon’s (VZ) adjusted EPS rose ~23.2% YoY basis to reach $1.17 in the first quarter. Sprint’s (S) EPS improved from -$0.07 in the fourth fiscal quarter of 2016 to $0.02 in the fourth fiscal quarter of 2017 (quarter ended March 2018). T-Mobile (TMUS) reported EPS of $0.78 during the same quarter.
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