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What's Wrong With Walt Disney's Stock Today?

Anders Bylund
August 7, 2013

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over daily movements, we do like to keep an eye on market changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

Walt Disney (NYSE: DIS) investors always knew the second quarter of 2013 had some huge shoes to fill. Given the high stakes, the stock's 1.7% drop today looks like a perfectly acceptable adjustment.

The House of Mouse faced 2012's record-breaking mega-hit The Avengers in this quarter's year-over-year comparisons. The Marvel superhero tentpole scored $620 million in domestic box-office receipts and $1.5 billion worldwide. It's the third-most successful movie of all time, behind only James Cameron's Titanic and Avatar.

That's a heavy headwind for this quarter. Disney's cinematic adventures account for a large percentage of its total revenue, and they also fuel future results by tapping into DVD and Blu-ray releases, TV and online runs, theme park tie-ins, lunchboxes, and Hulk-styled underwear.

But Disney had the perfect follow-up in Avengers satellite feature Iron Man 3. The company paid top dollar for superstar Robert Downey Jr. and his supporting cast, and it was well worth the investment. Iron Man 3 collected $1.2 billion in global sales, and about $400 million dropped straight down to the bottom line.

In the end, Disney reported 2% higher earnings year over year on 4% higher sales. Studio revenue slipped 2%, allowing parks and cable network operations to drive some total growth. These results were roughly in line with analyst estimates.

Disney's drop is the second-largest swoon on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI) today. But Disney has crushed its Dow peers in 2013 with a 32% return so far,