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Liberty Global plc (NASDAQ:LBTY.A) Just Released Its Annual Results And Analysts Are Updating Their Estimates

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·4 min read
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As you might know, Liberty Global plc (NASDAQ:LBTY.A) last week released its latest yearly, and things did not turn out so great for shareholders. Revenues missed expectations somewhat, coming in at US$12b, but statutory earnings fell catastrophically short, with a loss of US$2.70 some 265% larger than what the analysts had predicted. The analysts typically update their forecasts at each earnings report, and we can judge from their estimates whether their view of the company has changed or if there are any new concerns to be aware of. With this in mind, we've gathered the latest statutory forecasts to see what the analysts are expecting for next year.

Check out our latest analysis for Liberty Global


Taking into account the latest results, the most recent consensus for Liberty Global from 15 analysts is for revenues of US$13.4b in 2021 which, if met, would be a decent 16% increase on its sales over the past 12 months. Earnings are expected to improve, with Liberty Global forecast to report a statutory profit of US$0.64 per share. Yet prior to the latest earnings, the analysts had been anticipated revenues of US$13.4b and earnings per share (EPS) of US$0.64 in 2021. The consensus analysts don't seem to have seen anything in these results that would have changed their view on the business, given there's been no major change to their estimates.

It will come as no surprise then, to learn that the consensus price target is largely unchanged at US$34.69. Fixating on a single price target can be unwise though, since the consensus target is effectively the average of analyst price targets. As a result, some investors like to look at the range of estimates to see if there are any diverging opinions on the company's valuation. The most optimistic Liberty Global analyst has a price target of US$56.00 per share, while the most pessimistic values it at US$22.00. Note the wide gap in analyst price targets? This implies to us that there is a fairly broad range of possible scenarios for the underlying business.

Looking at the bigger picture now, one of the ways we can make sense of these forecasts is to see how they measure up against both past performance and industry growth estimates. One thing stands out from these estimates, which is that Liberty Global is forecast to grow faster in the future than it has in the past, with revenues expected to grow 16%. If achieved, this would be a much better result than the 11% annual decline over the past five years. By contrast, our data suggests that other companies (with analyst coverage) in the industry are forecast to see their revenue grow 1.7% per year. Not only are Liberty Global's revenues expected to improve, it seems that the analysts are also expecting it to grow faster than the wider industry.

The Bottom Line

The most obvious conclusion is that there's been no major change in the business' prospects in recent times, with the analysts holding their earnings forecasts steady, in line with previous estimates. Fortunately, they also reconfirmed their revenue numbers, suggesting sales are tracking in line with expectations - and our data suggests that revenues are expected to grow faster than the wider industry. There was no real change to the consensus price target, suggesting that the intrinsic value of the business has not undergone any major changes with the latest estimates.

Following on from that line of thought, we think that the long-term prospects of the business are much more relevant than next year's earnings. We have estimates - from multiple Liberty Global analysts - going out to 2025, and you can see them free on our platform here.

You should always think about risks though. Case in point, we've spotted 1 warning sign for Liberty Global you should be aware of.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.