The fourth quarter’s earnings are set to start in about two weeks. We’ll be hearing from basically every publicly traded company, and seeing how well they did in the final quarter of 2015. We’ll also see how they did for the entire year. T-Mobile already announced preliminary numbers for the quarter. Although they didn’t break down their 2.1 million net adds for the fourth quarter. Wells Fargo analysts are expecting them to announce about 1.29 million postpaid net adds with 917,000 being handsets. Verizon on the other hand is expected to announce 1.52 million net adds for the quarter. Verizon is also expected to see churn of around 1.08.
Churn, for those that may not be aware, is a figure that shows us how many people are leaving the carrier versus who is staying with the carrier. So ideally, you want your churn rate to be as low as possible. That shows investors that you are keeping your customers and gaining new ones. T-Mobile’s churn for the quarter, Wells Fargo estimates, will be around 1.46 percent. They are also predicting that T-Mobile will announce $100 million in leasing revenue for the fourth quarter. Wells Fargo noted about T-Mobile US, “These customer additions and churn numbers continue to be impressive, in our view, with TMUS capturing the overwhelming majority of postpaid handset growth.”
Analysts believe that Sprint will be adding about 625,000 in the quarter. Putting AT&T in last place, who is expected to lose 300,000 handset customers in the quarter, but add 500,000 tablets. Not bad for Sprint, especially since their churn is said to be around 2.1 percent. A decrease from 2.3 percent year-over-year for the nation’s fourth largest carrier.
Most companies will be announcing their earnings on the last week of January. AT&T is doing theirs on January 26th and others will be around that date. So we’ll have more concrete numbers in just a few weeks. But right now it looks like AT&T will continue to add customers in other areas, while the others will continue to add more postpaid handsets in the quarter. And seeing churn rate change quite a bit is pretty interesting, but it also shows how much competition is going on right now in the wireless space.