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MDU Resources (MDU) Up 0.5% Since Last Earnings Report: Can It Continue?

A month has gone by since the last earnings report for MDU Resources (MDU). Shares have added about 0.5% in that time frame, outperforming the S&P 500.

Will the recent positive trend continue leading up to its next earnings release, or is MDU Resources due for a pullback? Before we dive into how investors and analysts have reacted as of late, let's take a quick look at its most recent earnings report in order to get a better handle on the important drivers.

MDU Resources' Q3 Earnings Miss Estimates, Sales Up Y/Y

MDU Resources reported third-quarter 2018 operating earnings of 55 cents per share, which missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 56 cents by 1.79%. Operating earnings were 22.2% higher than the year-ago quarter’s level.

Total Revenues

Total revenues were $1,280.8 million, up 0.65% from $1,272.5 million in the year-ago quarter.

Highlights of the Release

In the quarter under review, operating expenses amounted to $1,140.8 million, up 2.1% from the prior-year quarter’s figure of $1,117.2 million.

Operating income was $140 million, down 9.8% year over year.

The company incurred interest expense of $21 million, up from $20.9 million in the prior-year quarter.

MDU Resources had a combined backlog of $1.48 billion of work in the construction services and construction materials businesses at the end of the third quarter compared with $1.19 billion in the year-ago quarter.

Company’s operating revenues from the electric, natural gas distribution and regulated pipeline as well as midstream segments fell 3% to $200.6 million. However, revenues from the non-regulated pipeline and midstream, construction materials and contracting, construction services and other segments increased 1.3% to $1,080.2 million.

The company completed the purchase of an expansion to Thunder Spirit Wind farm in southwestern North Dakota.

Financial Highlights

Total debt was $1,915 million as of Sep 30, 2018, up from $1,741 million as of Jun 30, 2017. The company’s net cash flow from operating activities in the first nine months of 2018 was $317.4 million, up from $271.9 million in the year-ago period.


MDU Resources reaffirmed 2018 guidance for earnings per share in the range of $1.25-$1.45. The company plans to invest $786 million toward capital projects and acquisitions in 2018.

How Have Estimates Been Moving Since Then?

Analysts were quiet during the last two month period as none of them issued any earnings estimate revisions.

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