Drew Industries Earnings Soar; Stock Sinks

Elkhart, Ind.-based Drew Industries (NYSE: DW  ) shares were tumbling in early Friday trading, down more than 6% despite a Q3 2013 earnings report that showed the company missing analyst revenue estimates by a whisker -- but blowing right past earnings expectations.

Q3 2013 revenues of $251 million were 11% higher than what Drew reported in the year-ago quarter, yet still fell more than a million dollars short of analysts' expected $252 million. On the plus side, Drew's earnings number was simply superb: $0.62 per share in profit, where only $0.55 per share had been expected. Free cash flow at the firm performed similarly well, with the year-to-date take rising to $35.6 million, a 57% increase over Drew's FCF number for the first nine months of 2012.

Drew attributed its success largely to the 12% improvement in sales through its RV segment, which makes up the bulk of Drew's business. Nationwide, RV sales were up 8% in Q3, suggesting that Drew gained significant market share in growing faster than the rest of the industry -- just not as fast as analysts had hoped it would.

Despite the good earnings news, Drew shares are down significantly today as the maker of components for manufactured homes and RVs warned that it will need to make investments soon to "improve production capacity, investing in personnel and facilities in excess of current needs" -- money spent that will likely "have a short-term negative impact on margins."

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