What happened 

Shares of jeweler Tiffany & Co. (NYSE:TIF) dropped as much as 9.7% on Wednesday after reporting earnings that fell short of expectations. At 11:30 p.m. EDT, shares had recovered slightly, but were still down 7% on the day. 

So what

Sales rose 1% globally, to $899.6 million, on strength in Asia-Pacific and wholesale diamond sales, but were below analyst estimates of $913.7 million. Net income jumped from $87.5 million a year ago to $92.9 million, or $0.74 per share. That topped Wall Street's estimate of $0.70 per share.

Diamond ring sitting on a granite counter.

Image source: Getty Images.

Investors today focused on a 3% decline in comparable-store sales, which isn't usually a good sign for retail companies. Sales in the Americas were a big part of the problem. Comparable sales were down 4% versus a year ago, which management blamed on a decline in foreign tourism and local spending. 

Now what

Tiffany's bottom-line improvement, despite a drop in sales, is a testament to its more focused business and better margins. But long-term investors would like to see more growth, and it appears that the high-end jewelry market just isn't as robust as it was a couple of years ago. With that said, shares still trade at only about 25 times trailing earnings, and this is a company with long-term staying power, so I see this current weakness as a great opportunity for long-term investors to buy into the stock. 

Travis Hoium has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.