Why Applied Industrial Technologies Shares Popped Today

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 Applied Industrial Technologies (NYSE: AIT  ) jumped 10% today after the company reported earnings.

So what: Sales fell 1.3% in the fiscal second quarter, to $581.9 million, and net income dropped $1.1 million, to $25.9 million, or $0.61 per share. Analysts were expecting $593.7 million in revenue, and earnings of $0.59 per share; so, while profits were better than expected, the top line was clearly well short of expectations. 

Now what: Management pointed to weak industrial demand and negative foreign currency translation as a driver of the weak top line. Guidance was maintained at earnings of $2.65 to $2.95 per share, so the weakness is expected to be short-lived. I'd like to see top-line growth before jumping in, but the cost controls that led to a decent bottom-line result is encouraging for investors.

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