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Thursday Earnings Wrap: Good Day for Verizon (VZ), Travelers (TRV)

Posts by Ian Wyatt

Bank earnings have garnered most of the headlines over the past week. Rightfully so – banks have been the market leaders of late, and each one of them reported earnings that were better than analysts were expecting.

But several other companies reported strong quarterly earnings today. Chief among them was Verizon (NYSE: VZ), which also reported earnings that were better than anticipated. The communications giant made a profit of $1.69 billion in the first quarter, up from $1.44 billion during the same period a year ago.

The 59 cents in per-share earnings was a penny higher than the 58 cents per share Thomson Reuters analysts were expecting, according to The Wall Street Journal. Verizon stock got a modest 1.4% boost as a result of the earnings beat.

Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) is the other big name left scheduled to report today, after the market closes. Until then, here are several other companies that announced earnings on Thursday:

  • Travelers (NYSE: TRV): The stock rose nearly 4% today after the U.S. business and consumer insurance group’s earnings weren’t nearly as unsightly as feared. Net income fell 4% in the first quarter, or $2.02 per diluted share, from the same period a year ago. Analysts had been forecasting a far steeper decline of 50 cents per share. In fact, Travelers retained enough money to increase its quarterly dividend by 5 cents to 46 cents a share.
  • Philip Morris (NYSE: PM): The Richmond, Virginia-based cigarette behemoth saw its net income jump 13% last quarter. Profits were $1.25 per share, higher than the $1.20 a share most analysts were calling for. Revenue also increased 10%. But Philip Morris stock actually fell 1.4% as the company cut its full-year earnings forecasts from $5.25 a share to $5.20 a share.