Synutra Shares Plunged: What You Need to Know

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 Synutra International (Nasdaq: SYUT  ) fell more than 13% in early trading on what appear to be concerns about its quarterly results, due next Tuesday.

So what: Synutra is China's leading maker of infant formula. Trouble is, that's not much of a growth business right now. Analysts expect sales to dip 30% as last year's $0.17-a-share profit turns into an $0.18-per-share loss.

Now what: At no time during the past two years have Fools given Synutra more than a one-star rating in CAPS. They're just not sold on the business, and for good reason. The company hasn't produced positive returns on capital since 2008 and revenue has declined every year since. Synutra has also burned through more than $40 million in cash from operations over the trailing 12 months. In short, there's no history to support the vast growth presumptions cooked into the stock's valuation.

There are far better Chinese stock ideas out there. My colleagues on the Motley Fool Global Gains team are getting ready to visit with many of them right now. Click here to sign up to receive their updates from China in real time.

Interested in more info on Synutra International? Add it to your watchlist.

Fool contributor Tim Beyers is a member of the Motley Fool Rule Breakers stock-picking team. He didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. Check out his portfolio holdings and Foolish writings, or connect with him on Twitter as @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader.

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