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American Public Education (APEI) Beats Q3 Earnings Estimates


American Public Education, Inc. APEI reported third-quarter 2017 earnings per share of 27 cents, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 21 cents by 28.6%. Adjusted earnings in the year ago quarter was 35 cents.

Revenues and Enrollment

Total revenues of $73.3 million surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $71.2 million by 2.9%. Revenues however declined 0.7% year over year owing to lower contribution from American Public University System.

American Public Education, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

The company operates through two segments — American Public Education Segment or APEI and Hondros College, Nursing Programs (HCN).

APEI primarily includes operations of American Military University and American Public University, together referred to as American Public University System (APUS).

Revenues declined 3.3% to $64.9 million from $67.1 million in the prior-year quarter due to a decrease in net course registrations.

In the quarter, total net course registration at APUS declined 4% year over year, while net course registrations by new students fell 5% during the period.

Net course registrations of new students declined due to a 20% decrease in net course registrations by new students using Federal Student Aid (FSA).

Net course registrations by new students utilizing military tuition assistance or TA increased 2% and veteran benefits or VA decreased 6% year over year.

Hondros College of Nursing revenues increased 25.4% to $8.4 million from the prior-year quarter owing to higher new enrollments and an increase in revenue per student resulting from a change in program mix and other factors.

Total enrollment at the Hondros College Nursing Programs increased 11% year over year to 1,790 students, while new student enrollment rose 58% year over year.

Inside the Headline Numbers

Income from operations before interest income and income taxes was $7.6 million, compared with $0.4 million in the prior-year quarter.

Total costs and expenses decreased 10.5% year over year to $65.7 million in the quarter.

Selling and promotional or S&P expenses, as a percentage of revenues, increased to 20% from 17.8% in the prior-year quarter.


As of Sep 30, 2017, total cash and cash equivalents were approximately $166.3 million, compared with $146.4 million as of Dec 31, 2016. Capital expenditures were approximately $6.5 million during the first nine months of 2017, down from $9.7 million a year ago.

Fourth-Quarter 2017 Outlook

Total revenues are likely to decline approximately 5-1% year over year.

The company expects earnings in the range of 29-34 cents per share.

At APUS, net course registrations by new students are expected to decrease 12-8% on a year-over-year basis. Net course registrations are likely to decline 8-4%.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

American Public Education carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Peer Releases

Strayer Education Inc. STRA reported third-quarter 2017 adjusted earnings of 34 cents per share, missing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 37 cents by 8.1%. Earnings increased 36% year over year.

Capella Education Company CPLA reported earnings of 73 cents per share in the third quarter, which surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 68 cents by 7.4%. However, earnings declined 9.9% year over year.

Adtalem Global Education Inc. ATGE reported first-quarter fiscal 2018 results, wherein both earnings and revenues fell short of expectations. On a year-over-year basis, the company’s earnings declined 33.3% and revenues fell 6.4% from the year-ago quarter.

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