Analysts always have something to say, but they aren’t always correct. Wells Fargo analysts are stating today what they are expecting from AT&T’s Q4 2015 earnings, which we should hear later this month from AT&T. And some of the numbers look good, while others are not so good. The wireless industry is being the most competitive it has been in quite some time. AT&T is obviously being hit by that competition, but they aren’t taking it laying down. In fact, they just brought back unlimited data today.
While AT&T is expected to report about 800,000 net tablet subscriber add ons for the quarter, Wells Fargo Securities believes that there will be a net loss of around 300,000 phone subscribers. This would bring the total for Q4 – supposedly the biggest quarter of the year – t around 500,000 overall net adds. However they are forgetting AT&T’s deal with GM, so they will probably have a larger number thanks to cars being added to their network. Margins are supposed to rise, however. Wells Fargo believes EBITDA margins will be 43.8 percent for the quarter. The expected margin was 42.7 percent.
Looking at the numbers that Wells Fargo is quoting, it appears AT&T had a pretty decent quarter. Revenues are also slated to be on the rise, hitting around $15.1 billion for the quarter. Of course, it’s important to note that these numbers are educated guesses basically, from analysts and not cold hard facts from AT&T. On January 26th, AT&T is slated to release their numbers as well as do their quarterly conference call. At that time we should also be hearing from Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile and seeing what they did in the quarter. T-Mobile already announced preliminary numbers, which shows a 2.1 million customer addition compared to the previous quarter.
AT&T has been focusing a bit more on the DirecTV acquisition as of late, and transitioning DirecTV users over to AT&T, instead of using one of their competitors for wireless service. That is why we are seeing all kinds of bundle deals, as well as the return of unlimited data. Which did surprise a big number of us, seeing as it was 5 years ago that the company axed unlimited data.