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Why Winnebago Stock Just Crashed 10.5%

By Rich Smith – Oct 21, 2020 at 1:57PM

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Q4 2020 was terrific, and 2021 could be even better. What's not to like?

What happened

Recreational-vehicle (RV) maker Winnebago (WGO 2.57%) suffered a one-stock pileup of its own Wednesday, falling 10.5% through 1:20 p.m. EDT after reporting...actually, some pretty awesome earnings.

Analysts had expected Winnebago -- heading into its fiscal fourth quarter 2020 -- to earn $0.90 per share pro forma on sales of $722.9 million. As it turned out, though, Winnebago actually earned $1.45 per share and on sales of $737.8 million, beating on both the top and bottom lines.  

Cartoon characters confused by stock chart arrow falling and crashing into floor.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

It seems that wasn't good enough for investors in Winnebago today, however, and the "why not" is not exactly clear.

After all, in addition to "beating" on earnings, Winnebago reported insanely good sales growth for the quarter -- up 39% year over year. Gross margins expanded by 90 basis points, and earnings when calculated according to generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) -- although not quite as good as the pro forma number noted above -- were still up 24% year over year at $1.25 per diluted share.  

Topping it all off, Winnebago raised its dividend by 9% and is now paying shareholders $0.12 per quarter.

Now what

Even Winnebago's guidance was good! Heading into fiscal 2021, Winnebago CEO Michael Happe noted that the company is enjoying "strong operational momentum, a record backlog, and the financial flexibility to manage through the ongoing uncertainty in the environment," and is "encouraged by the ongoing outdoor recreation demand trends we are experiencing."

Although management didn't give any hard numbers on what it expects to earn in the year ahead, analysts, at least, seem optimistic, predicting that fiscal 2021 will see Winnebago more than double 2020's $1.84 in diluted earnings to $4.12 per share, on 25% sales growth.

With numbers like these, I truly believe Winnebago stock should be going up today -- not down.

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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