Shares of Lear Corp. (LEA) climbed 6.6% to $158.79 at the close of trading on Friday after the automotive seating and electrical distribution systems company beat Wall Street's fourth-quarter earnings expectations.
The Southfield, Michigan-based company reported adjusted earnings of $261 million, or $4.05 a share, surpassing analysts' forecasts of $3.96. The company reported adjusted net income of $300 million, or $4.38 a share, a year ago.
Lear posted revenue of $4.94 billion in the fourth quarter, missing Wall Street's expectations $4.98 billion. Excluding the impact of foreign exchange, Lear said, sales were down 5%, reflecting lower production on key Lear platforms, partially offset by the addition of new business in both of the company's product segments. Lear posted revenue of $5.4 billion a year ago.
Net cash provided by operating activities totaled $758 million and free cash flow was $574 million.
Lear said core operating earnings were down $52 million to $389 million, or 7.9% of sales, primarily reflecting the decrease in sales. In the seating segment, margins and adjusted margins were 7.5% and 8.0% of sales, respectively. In the E-Systems segment, margins and adjusted margins were 10.3% and 11.3% of sales, respectively.
For the year, the company reported earnings of $1.15 billion, or $17.22 a share. Revenue totaled $21.15 billion.
"In the fourth quarter, global vehicle production was down 5% compared to last year, with China down 15%," Ray Scott, president and CEO said in a statement. "Despite a more challenging macroeconomic and industry environment, we delivered solid financial results."
Lear said it expects 2019 revenue in the range of $20.9 billion to $21.7 billion.