Whirlpool Corp. (WHR) Wednesday reported an increase in profit for the first quarter driven by strong growth in revenues. Both earnings and revenues for the quarter trumped Wall Street expectations. Moving ahead, the appliances maker also raised its full year 2021 guidance.
Benton Harbor, Michigan-based Whirlpool’s first-quarter profit rose to $433 million or $6.81 per share from $154 million or $2.45 per share last year.
On an adjusted basis, earnings were $7.20 per share, up from last year’s $2.86 per share. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected earnings of $5.41 per share. Analysts’ estimates typically exclude one-time items.
Whirlpool’s first-quarter revenues grew 23.8% to $5.36 billion from $4.33 billion last year. Analysts had a consensus revenue estimate of $4.85 billion.
“We generated positive cash flow in the quarter, driven by strong net earnings and disciplined working capital management,” said Jim Peters, chief financial officer. “We are pleased that we are expanding our share repurchase authorization by $2 billion and increasing our dividend for the ninth consecutive year, demonstrating our continued commitment to returning capital to shareholders.”
Region wise, North America sales increased 19.8%, Europe, Middle East and Africa rose 33.2%, Latin American gained 18.4 and Asia was up 42.7%.
Looking forward, Whirlpool raised its guidance for full-year net sales growth to 13%, compared with growth around 6% in a previous estimate. The company now expects adjusted earnings of $22.50 to $23.50, up from prior estimate of $19.00 to $20.00 per share.
WHR is currently trading at $234.70, down $1.75 or 0.74%, on the NYSE. The stock, however, gained $4.05 or 1.73%, in the after-hours trade.
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