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Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
What: Shares of Scientific Games (Nasdaq: SGMS ) surged almost 11% in early trading after the maker of technology for lotteries and other types of gaming reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter sales.
So what: Revenue fell 9% to $212.1 million. Analysts were expecting just $202.7 million, validating December's big purchase by company insiders.
Now what: Even so, this isn't a growth story. The company's operating loss improved to just $11 million thanks to fewer non-cash charges. Debt is also up over the past year, from $1.37 billion to $1.39 billion.
Scientific Games says it produced $61.9 million in free cash flow during 2010, but that's balanced against more than $100 million in interest payments over the same period. Seeing that, I wonder where the funds for growth will come from and who will end up paying the tab. Keep clear of this stock, Fool.