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Thursday, September 24, 2020

-=Accenture Plc (ACN) reported earnings on Thur 24 Sept 20 (b/o)


For the quarter ended Aug. 31, Accenture (ticker: ACN) posted revenue of $10.8 billion, down 2%, or 1% in constant currency, slightly below the analyst consensus at $10.9 billion. Profits excluding a one-time investment gain were $1.70 a share, below the $1.73 Wall Street expected. New bookings were $14 billion, which the company said were its second-highest ever.

Revenue from consulting services was $5.68 billion, down 8% in the quarter—including 3 percentage points due to a reduction in reimbursable travel, as the company’s consultants were forced to stay at home by the pandemic. Outsourcing revenues were up 6%.

The company said profits included 3 cents a share from higher nonoperating income and a penny a share from a lower share count, offset by a 3 cent decrease from lower revenue and operating results, and 5 cents a share from a higher effective tax rate.

Revenues were down 1% in North America, 5% in Europe and 1% in “growth markets.” By industry group, revenues were down 1% in communications, media and technology, down 1% in financial services, up 11% in health and public service, down 6% in products, and down 11% in resources.

Accenture also disclosed a 10% boost in its quarterly dividend rate to 88 cents a share. The stock now has a yield of 1.6%.

The company said it is expanding its stock-repurchase program by $5 billion, boosting the total to $6.3 billion. Accenture finished the August quarter with $8.4 billion in cash. The company spent $590 million to buy back 2.6 million shares in the latest quarter, bringing total repurchases for the year to $2.92 billion.

For the November quarter, the company is projecting revenue of $11.15 billion to $11.55 billion, which would range from flat to down 3% in constant currency. The Street consensus expectation had been for revenue of $11.52 billion.

For the August 2021 fiscal year, Accenture is projecting revenue growth of between 2% and 5%. The company sees full-year profits of $7.80 to $8.10 a share, which is slightly below the Street consensus forecast of $8.13 a share.

CEO Julie Sweet said in a statement that the company’s results show the value of Accenture’s growth stragy, the firm’s resilience and disciplined management, and the power of its relationships.

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