What happened

Shares of HP (NYSE:HPQ) outpaced a booming market in August. The stock rose 11% compared with the S&P 500's 7% increase, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

That increased erased some of investor's short-term losses, but the tech stock is still trailing the market and remains lower so far in 2020.

A man using a printer.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

The PC and printer maker reported solid operating results in late August that relieved some of the fears Wall Street has about the business. Sales fell just 2% during a disruptive time for most industries, and HP remained solidly profitable. Executives said they're seeing more opportunities than threats right now as consumers and commercial enterprises move more toward a work-from-home platform.

Now what

HP isn't done putting its challenges behind it, though. Weak printer sales are pressuring its margins, and overall demand is still projected to decline through at least 2021. These issues suggest it will be difficult for the company to mount a quick and sustained growth rebound. That's why investors might want to lower their expectations about last month's stock price rally extending enough to make the stock an obvious value today.

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.