Welcome to another edition of top stock highlights, where we bring you snippets of earnings and corporate events from various companies.
Suntec REIT (SGX: T82U)
Suntec REIT released its fiscal 2022 first quarter (1Q2022) business update.
Gross revenue increased by 13.9% year on year to S$99.2 million while net property income (NPI) climbed 24.9% year on year to S$74.3 million.
The better performance was attributed to higher contributions from Suntec City Mall, Suntec City Convention Centre and 21 Harris Street in Australia, as well as a new contribution from the Minster Building in the UK.
As a result, distribution per unit (DPU) rose 16.9% year on year to S$0.02391 for the quarter.
Suntec REIT’s committed portfolio occupancy for its office and retail divisions stood at 96.7% and 95.2%, respectively.
The gearing level was fairly high at 43.7% with an average weighted debt maturity of 2.92 years.
The cost of financing stood at 2.35% with an interest coverage ratio of 2.6 times.
Rent reversion was flat for 1Q2022 for Suntec City Mall, an improvement from the negative reversion experience in the prior three quarters.
Meta Platforms (NASDAQ: FB)
Meta Platforms, which owns social media brands Facebook and Instagram as well as messaging app WhatsApp, reported its 1Q2022 earnings too.
Revenue increased by 7% year on year to US$27.9 billion.
However, total expenses surged by 31% year on year, leading to a 25% year on year fall in operating profit to US$8.5 billion.
Net profit declined by 21% year on year to US$7.5 billion.
Meta’s Reality Labs division, which is building augmented and virtual reality technology for the company’s vision of the metaverse, reported an operating loss of US$2.96 billion, up from the US$1.83 billion a year ago.
The metaverse is a virtual world where users can interact virtually while they work, shop or play games.
CEO Mark Zuckerberg has reiterated that Reality Labs will take years to turn a profit.
On the bright side, Facebook’s daily active users resumed its climb to 1.96 billion after suffering a slight decline in the previous quarter.
Monthly active users also increased by 2.9% year on year to 2.94 billion.
Frasers Centrepoint Trust (SGX: J69U)
FCT released its fiscal 2022 first half (1H2022) earnings for the period ended 31 March 2022.
Gross revenue edged up 1.5% year on year to S$176.2 million while NPI increased by 3.8% year on year to S$130.5 million.
DPU edged up 2.3% year on year to S$0.06136.
Annualised DPU stands at S$0.12272, giving FCT’s units a forward distribution yield of around 5%.
Committed occupancy for the portfolio stood at 97.8%, while rental reversion was healthy at 4.12% for 1H2022.
Aggregate leverage stood at 33.3% as of 31 March 2022 with a low cost of debt of 2.2% and an interest coverage ratio of 5.72 times.
Tenant sales year to date have surpassed pre-COVID levels, with March 2022 coming 5% ahead from its pre-COVID average even as footfall that month was just a little over two-thirds of its pre-COVID level.
FCT has headroom for organic rental growth through tenancy curation and targeted marketing activities to enhance space efficiency.
With a relatively low gearing ratio, the retail REIT can only boost its future DPU through acquisitions.
PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL)
PayPal, the global payments company, released a mixed set of numbers for its 1Q2022.
Net revenue rose 8% year on year to US$6.5 billion, though this was offset by higher transaction and administrative expenses.
Operating margin for the quarter fell to 11%, down from 17.3% a year ago.
Net profit was more than halved from US$1.1 billion to US$509 million.
Free cash flow declined by 32% year on year to US$1.1 billion.
On the bright side, total payment volume increased by 13% year on year to US$323 billion, and PayPal saw 47 transactions conducted per active account, up 11% year on year.
A total of 5.2 billion payment transactions were conducted through the company’s platform, up 18% year on year.
A total of 2.4 million net new active accounts were added.
During the quarter, PayPal introduced a savings feature as part of its revamped digital wallet, while also launching new Buy Now, Pay Later offerings in Japan and Germany.
The company also renewed its global partnership with American Express (NYSE: AXP) and Citibank (NYSE: C) to expand the range of payment choices for its customers.
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Disclaimer: Royston Yang owns shares of Suntec REIT, Meta Platforms and PayPal.