Why FireEye, Inc. Shares Skyrocketed Today

Is FireEye's jump meaningful? Or just another movement?

May 12, 2014 at 11:20PM

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 FireEye (NASDAQ:FEYE) jumped nearly 11% Monday, then settled to close up around 8% leading into the cyber-security specialist's on-campus analyst open house this afternoon.

So what: Disappointing guidance has caused FireEye shares to plummet following each of its past two quarterly reports -- including an 11% drop in February, and a 22% plunge last Wednesday -- and both results were largely influenced by significantly increased chunks of cash dedicated to R&D and sales and marketing. Even after today's jump, the stock still sits more than 70% below its March highs.

But FireEye's open house today could be a solid first step to providing more clarity to analysts on why it's missing their proposed marks. To be sure, FireEye stated the afternoon's events would include product demonstrations, Q&A with senior management, and updates on their "vision, strategy and operations."

Now what: Of course, that doesn't change the fact FireEye has made a habit of falling significantly short of Wall Street's expectations. But if their efforts today can at least help analysts understand why that's the case and successfully help them pitch a longer-term outlook, perhaps the broader investing public will be more forgiving of the company -- especially considering its underlying stock trades at a lofty 17 times trailing 12-month sales. For now, though, and despite the big pullback since the last time I opted to stay on the sidelines, I'm just fine keeping FireEye on my watch list.

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Steve Symington owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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