Shares of Windstream Holdings (WINMQ) soared as much as 33.9% higher on Thursday, following a relatively strong second-quarter earnings report. Aas of 1:40 p.m. EDT, the skyrocketing surge had cooled down to a still-impressive 27.5% gain.
The regional telecom's adjusted revenues fell 3% year over year to land at $1,44 billion. Windstream's GAAP net losses expanded from $1.83 to $2.30 per share. If that sounds grim, the Wall Street consensus estimate had called for an even deeper net loss of $2.66 per share, and the top-line result was right in line with the general analyst view.
Windstream's enterprise service sales rose 1% year over year to $730 million, representing 50.5% of the company's total revenues. Wholesale product sales increased from zero to $0.1 million. The remaining six reportable sub-divisions in Windstream's portfolio all reported declining sales. The company should probably spin off and/or shut down most of its operations to refocus exclusively on that healthy enterprise opportunity. Until that happens, Windstream will remain a terrible investment.
The stock deserves a slow clap for today's sudden bounce, but the long-term story remains the same -- and very negative. Even after today's sharp price increase, Windstream's share prices have fallen 58% lower in 2018. I expect these gains to be short-lived and quickly forgotten.