American Tower , which has broadcast and wireless-communications towers planted across the country, broadcast its own earnings news early this morning, The firm reported third-quarter results of $59.6 million or 14 cents per share, up from $3.5 million (1 cent per share) last year. Revenue rose 10% to $367.6 million. Analysts were expecting per-share results of 7 cents on $363 million in revenue.
Business continues to boom for AMT, which describes demand for tower space as robust. Looking ahead to 2007, it expects to book total revenue of $1.42 billion in the year, just below Wall Street's targets of $1.44 billion.
The future outlook (combined with a weak market) has trumped the stock's positive earnings surprise, sending AMT shares down 4% this afternoon. The equity is hanging precariously by its 20-day moving average, below which AMT has not closed since October 22. AMT is also still above support from its 10-week and 20-week moving averages, which recently forged a bullish crossover.
The sentiment picture for AMT is mixed, with analysts in the positive camp and options players betting on a reversal. Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) for AMT stands at 1.96, or 3 percentage points away from a new annual high. Meanwhile, all 7 of the analysts following AMT have named the stock a buy, with 6 of the 7 adding the strong designation.