What happened 

Shares of industrial supplier Forterra Inc (NASDAQ:FRTA) dropped as much as 13.9% in trading Tuesday after a slew of analyst downgrades. At 11:50 a.m. EDT, shares were still down 13% on the day. 

So what

Citi and SunTrust lowered their rating on Forterra from buy to neutral, and SunTrust lowered its price target to $14 per share. RBC Capital also lowered its rating to market perform. 

Water coming from a pipe.

Image source: Getty Images.

These downgrades come a day after the stock plunged because of declining earnings. In the first quarter, new loss was $0.35 per share, and the company showed no organic growth, which is a terrible sign for any business. 

Now what

Analyst downgrades aren't in and of themselves a reason to change your opinion on a stock, but the fact that they helped drive a slide in Forterra's stock after a weak earnings report isn't great news for the company. 

The major concern long term is that Forterra has $1.26 billion in debt, declining margins, and growing losses. That's enough to send me running from a stock whether analysts downgrade it or not. 

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.