Itron (ITRI) Surging 10% After Posting Strong Earnings

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05:50:06 pm on July 28, 2010

It’s been a rough few months for Itron (ITRI), culminating in a 10% plunge several days on news it has likely lost a big smart meter deal with Sempra Energy (SRE) to Esco Technologies (ESE).  After the bell today, the stock is continuing to erase that loss after the company reported strong results after the bell.

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Itron (ITRI) smashed analyst estimates, posting a Q2 non-GAAP EPS of $0.98, versus the analyst estimate of $0.73. Revenue for the quarter was $569 million, compared to analyst estimates of $499.94 million.  Sequentially, that’s about a 10% improvement in profits and a 14% improvement in revenues.  It marks the 4th consecutive quarter of accelerating revenue growth.  Quarter over quarter, EPS doubled while revenues surged 38%.  A very impressive quarter from a company that is still going to be a great long term play despite possibly missing one big contract.

CEO Malcolm Unsworth commented: “We are having a fantastic year with record financial results, strong bookings and record backlog.  This performance underscores the strength of Itron’s portfolio of products and solutions — the broadest in the industry. At the same time, there were some disappointments with recent contract awards in North America. As we look forward, we are actively pursuing a variety of activities to enhance our competitive position in these areas.”

Shares of Itron (ITRI) are up nearly 10% after the bell today and if it holds would erase almost the entire loss off the Sempra news.  I think the correction over the past few months which has dropped the stock from above $80 to below $55 will eventually provide an excellent buying opportunity.  In my opinion, it’s just a bit too early yet.  I’d like to see a return to support around the $55 level.  It’s trading at $63 after hours.

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