Venator Materials PLC VNTR logged a loss of $174 million or $1.63 cents per share in the fourth quarter of 2019, wider than a loss of $69 million or 65 cents a year ago.
Adjusted loss per share for the quarter were 9 cents, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 14 cents.
Revenues fell around 4% year over year to $464 million in the reported quarter. The company saw lower sales across its segments. It faced challenges from lower pricing in its Titanium Dioxide unit in the quarter. Sales, however, surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $432.2 million.
Venator Materials PLC Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
Venator Materials PLC price-consensus-eps-surprise-chart | Venator Materials PLC Quote
Revenues from the Titanium Dioxide segment for the quarter fell 3% year over year to $354 million. The decline is attributable to lower titanium dioxide (TiO2) average selling prices, unfavorable currency translation and the impact of unfavorable mix that more than offset higher sales volumes. TiO2 selling prices were impacted by reduced prices in Europe and Asia.
Revenues from the Performance Additives segment went down 7% to $110 million, hurt by lower volumes and unfavorable currency impact. Average selling prices were stable on a year-over-year basis in the quarter. Volumes were impacted by softer demand for products used in automotive coatings, plastics and construction applications and the impact of portfolio optimization.
Loss for 2019 was $1.64 per share, wider than a loss of $1.53 per share a year ago.
Revenues were $2,130 million for the full year, down around 6% year over year.
Venator Materials ended 2019 with cash and cash equivalents of $55 million, down around 67% year over year. Long-term debt was $737 million, essentially flat year over year.
The company generated net cash from operating activities of $69 million and free cash flow of $20 million in the reported quarter.
Venator Materials also achieved $20 million of adjusted EBITDA improvements as part of its Business Improvement Program in 2019.
Going forward, Venator Materials sees a challenging macroeconomic environment in 2020. The company remains focused on improving free cash flow generation, reduce cash uses and further improve its cost competitiveness.
Venator Materials’ shares are down 37.5% over a year, compared with the 4% rise of the industry it belongs to.
Zacks Rank and Key Picks
Venator Materials currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Some better-ranked stocks in the basic materials space include Daqo New Energy Corp. DQ, NovaGold Resources Inc. NG and Commercial Metals Company CMC.
Daqo New Energy has projected earnings growth rate of 353.7% for 2020 and sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). The company’s shares have rallied roughly 95% in a year’s time. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
NovaGold has projected earnings growth rate of 11.1% for the current fiscal and carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). The company’s shares have surged around 143% over a year.
Commercial Metals has estimated earnings growth rate of 20.7% for the current fiscal and carries a Zacks Rank #2. The company’s shares have shot up roughly 23% in a year’s time.
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