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Wyndham reports YOY boost in Q4'17 net income, increases dividend

Wyndham Worldwide Corp. disclosed net income for the fourth quarter of $449 million, a 173.8% increase in the aggregate from $164 million in the fourth quarter of 2016.

For full year 2017, the company posted a 42.6% year-over-year rise in net income.

The company pointed out that it classified its European vacation rentals business as a discontinued operation during the fourth quarter. The resulting quarterly net income from continuing operations was $462 million and $818 million for 2017.

EPS for the quarter was $4.41, and $4.54 on a continuing operations basis.

Full-year 2017 EPS came in at $8.40 and was $7.89 on a continuing operations basis. The company's reported results received an additional boost from the favorable impact of U.S. corporate tax reform on fourth-quarter earnings.

The S&P Capital IQ consensus estimates for fourth-quarter and full-year 2017 EPS were $1.35 and $6.04, respectively.

For 2018, the company expects adjusted net income from continuing operations between $702 million and $722 million and adjusted diluted EPS from continuing operations between $6.90 and $7.05.

The S&P Capital IQ consensus estimate for 2018 EPS is $7.23.

For the first quarter, Wyndham expects adjusted diluted EPS between $1.24 and $1.27.

The S&P Capital IQ consensus normalized estimate for first-quarter EPS is $1.30.

The company's board authorized a quarterly cash dividend of 66 cents per share for the first quarter, up from the previous quarterly dividend of 58 cents per share.

During the fourth quarter, Wyndham repurchased 1.4 million shares of common stock for $150 million at an average price of $110.06 per share. In 2017, the company repurchased 6.3 million shares of stock at a cost of $601 million. In 2018, through February, it repurchased a further 200,000 shares for $21 million.

The company logged a one-time, net tax benefit of $426 million, predominantly driven by a reduction in its net deferred tax liability on the back of the lower corporate tax rate as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.

The planned separation of Wyndham into two publicly traded hospitality companies through a spinoff of its hotel group is expected to complete in the second quarter.