4 winners and 4 losers of reporting season

Over the last two weeks investors have seen some extreme contrasts in half-yearly and full-year earnings results by many of Australia’s biggest and best companies. But which companies have shone, and which have stumbled?

Here is a mix of four companies of each which have stood out for me so far:

4 Winners:

Healthcare and animal care distributor Ebos Limited (ASX: EBO) made a big splash with its first result as an ASX-listed company. Ebos beat prospective forecasts, grew net profit after taxes (NPAT) by 229% and raised its interim dividend 17% for the half year.

Cooper Basin focused energy producer Beach Petroleum Limited (ASX: BPT) was another big winner announcing record sales revenue of $557 million, up 63% for the half year. Shares jumped as much as 10% on Monday, before falling back yesterday.

BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) announced a glowing 15% increase to underlying EBIT for the half year to US$12.4 billion. The strong performance was driven by a substantial improvement in productivity and volume additions from the company’s new investments.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA) sent investor hearts fluttering by releasing a 13% increase in earnings per share just before Valentine’s Day. Cash NPAT was up 14%, driven by strong results across all the company’s business groups.

4 Losers:

The huge losses announcement by QBE Insurance Group Ltd  (ASX: QBE) yesterday was expected after the insurance giant warned of problems late last year. Shares rose on the announcement because of the optimistic outlook which promises better days ahead in 2014.

Although not an official report, Graincorp Limited (ASX: GNC) released a shareholder update warning that poor seasonal conditions in Queensland and northern NSW would contribute to a fall in full-year NPAT of up to 54%.

Drilling service company Boart Longyear Ltd. (ASX: BLY) saw revenue plummet almost 40% and announced a statutory net loss after taxes (NPAT) of US$620 million, compared to a $68 million profit the year prior.

Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX: NCM) announced an 88% fall in statuary profit for the half year, but EBIT were down just 14% to $404 million, a stronger result than many were anticipating given the 28% fall in the price of gold over 2013.

Foolish takeaway

The range of results is a valuable reminder of the value of holding a diversified spread of companies in your portfolio. The good companies help to balance any poor results that may sneak in.

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Motley Fool contributor Regan Pearson owns shares in QBE Insurance

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