After a disappointing first-quarter, Regal Entertainment Group’s second-quarter is looking much improved thanks to a string of blockbusters like “Iron Man 3,” “Star Trek: Into Darkness,” “The Great Gatsby” and others.
Summer ticket sales are up sharply from a year ago — about 14 percent, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal’s Marketwatch web site.
And when admissions are up that means the Knoxville-based theater operator is selling more popcorn, soda, candy and other high-margin concessions.
Regal reported a first-quarter profit of $22.5 million, a 51 percent drop from the 2012 1Q.
The 2013 second-quarter should be much improved.
“As measured from the first weekend of May through July 1, the 2013 year-to-date summer movie season has generated more than $2.4 billion in gross box-office receipts according to data compiled by Boxofficemojo.com. That’s up nearly 14% from 2012’s result and is the first double-digit year-over-year gain since 2002. And the season isn’t out of steam yet, with upcoming titles like “The Wolverine,” “Elysium” and “Pacific Rim,” Marketwatch reported.
Click here for the Marketwatch report comparing Regal and competitor Cinemark.
Analysts are looking for media company E.W. Scripps to report a turnaround from a year ago when it releases its third quarter financial statement on Friday.
Scripps, the parent company of the Knoxville News Sentinel and the Memphis Commercial Appeal, is expected to report a profit of about 9 cents per share compared to a loss of 9 cents per share in the third quarter last year.
Revenues are projected to be up about 27 percent to $214 million for the quarter.
Oil and natural gas company Tengasco Inc.’s stock has been downgraded by TheStreet Ratings from buy to hold.
The Knoxville-based company’s weak cash flow overshadows its revenue and profit growth, TheStreet, a digital financial media company, said today.
“The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 11.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 35.6%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company’s bottom line, displaying stagnant earnings per share,” TheStreet reported.
Despite disappointing first quarter earnings, restaurant chain Ruby Tuesday stock was upgraded today by TheStreet Ratings.
TheStreet, a digital financial media company, upped the Maryville-based casual dining chain from hold to buy.
“The company’s strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, reasonable valuation levels and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income,” TheStreet Ratings said.
Beating expectations has become the 1Q norm. The consenus among financial analysts was that corporate America had already squeezed as much profit as it could from a weak economy.
The analysts couldn’t have been more wrong. So far most companies have reported better than expected earnings. And by most, I mean about 8 out of 10.
It started with Alcoa, which reported a profit of $94 million, or 9 cents a share. Analysts were expecting a loss of 4 cents per share. On Tuesday, Apple surprised the experts with a profit of $11.6 billion, a whopping $12.30 a share. Analysts predicted $10.06 per share.
In between a slew of other companies have reported positive earnings.
If the experts could be so wrong about 1Q earnings, maybe the economy is doing better than they’re telling us. Or maybe this will be the highwater mark for 2012. I’m thinking the economy is slowly getting better and profits will be the norm this year.
Here’s a different view from Randall W. Forsyth writing for Barrons.com:
Alcoa Inc. wasn’t supposed to have a good first quarter — not according to the experts.
But the aluminium giant fooled the analysts and opened earnings season with a surprise when it reported a first quarter profit of 9 cents a share. That’s a clear rebound from a loss of 18 cents a share in the fourth quarter last year.
If the experts can miss so badly on Alcoa, what else do the analysts have wrong?
Alcoa, which has a major manufacturing operation in Blount County with more than 1,200 employees, was supposed to be struggling with a weak economy. Maybe the economy is doing better than the experts believe.
Earnings season is just starting, but today at least investors are in a happier mood. The market as a whole is rebounding from the April slide and Alcoa shares are rising.