Shares of Skechers (SKX 0.46%) climbed 88.7% in 2019, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence, easily outpacing the S&P 500's 29% gain as the casual footwear specialist managed to successfully weather macroeconomic challenges and tariff concerns.
It certainly helped that Skechers stock had entered last year having plunged nearly 40% in 2018, including a 15% drop in December 2018 alone amid concerns over the effect slowing global economic growth might have on consumer discretionary names.
But Skechers' gain last year wasn't exactly a straight line up. After rallying nearly 50% from January through the end of March, shares pulled back almost 20% through the end of May as the company grappled with what CFO John Vandemore described as "challenging conditions" that left first-quarter revenue up a weaker-than-expected 2.1%.
However, Skechers began to rebound in a big way over the next few months. Revenue growth accelerated to 10.9% in the second quarter, to a company-record $1.259 billion, as 19.8% international sales growth helped prop up a 1.5% gain from domestic stores.
In the company's earnings press release, CEO Robert Greenberg noted that at the time they were "continuing to strategically view our business with a global lens as trends are traveling faster," elaborating that many key product styles are now "introduced at virtually the same time around the world."
More recently, when Skechers released third-quarter results in October, investors celebrated yet another top-line growth acceleration to 15%, including 21.9% international growth and a much more respectable 6.7% domestic gain.
This time, Greenberg boasted that his company was "firing on all cylinders," adding: "Our global marketing efforts are creating awareness and generating demand."
And that momentum should continue. When Skechers releases its fourth-quarter 2019 results early next month, the market will be looking for the company to live up to guidance for sales in the range of $1.225 billion to $1.25 billion, or growth of roughly 13% to 15.3%, with adjusted earnings of $0.35 to $0.40 per share (up 13% to 29% year over year). If Skechers can manage to extend its habit of exceeding that outlook with global momentum on its side, I won't be the least bit surprised if shares have further to rise from here.