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Why Qiwi Stock Is Falling Today

By Rich Smith – Aug 16, 2018 at 1:51PM

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Sales surged, but earnings declined. That's not the way these things are supposed to work.

What happened

Shares of Qiwi (QIWI 9.88%) are falling today, down 13.6% as of 1:39 p.m. EDT, after the Russian payments specialist reported second-quarter results.

So what

Q2 revenue surged 46% year over year to 7 billion rubles. Operating profits declined 2%, and net income was down 13% to 940 million rubles (a 13.4% net profit margin). Still, in dollar terms, Qiwi earned $0.24 per share, bringing its profit for the first half of this year to $0.48.

Profits are down, but not out, and despite the negative reaction on Wall Street, CEO Sergey Solonin pronounced himself pleased with the company's "strong financial results in the payment services segment, which remains a core part of our business," and with the company's "strong cash flows."

Falling stock chart superimposed over digital map of the globe

Image source: Getty Images.

Now what

So why are investors upset? Possibly their objection is to Qiwi's guidance. Wrapping up its report, management predicted it will grow "total adjusted net revenue" 26% to 32% this year, but experience a 15% to 25% decline in "adjusted net profit."

It's not entirely clear how these "adjusted" numbers will translate to GAAP results, but Yahoo! Finance figures show that Wall Street was looking for Qiwi to grow its earnings by more than 5% this year. I wouldn't be at all surprised if this prospect of continued shrinking earnings is what has investors inclined to punish the stock today.

On the plus side, Qiwi's prediction of 26% to 32% revenue growth -- even if only "adjusted" -- appears superior to the 27% sales growth that Wall Street had been predicting. Don't be too surprised if Qiwi stock turns around and starts rising again in the weeks to come as that fact sinks in, and investors begin to realize that Qiwi is actually growing, not shrinking.

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

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