What happened

It's easy come, easy go for Tuniu Corporation (NASDAQ:TOUR) investors.

Last week, Tuniu shares scored back to back "green" days on the Nasdaq, rising more than 50% before the Thanksgiving Day holiday. Those gains reversed a day later, however, and shifted into losses. Now as we approach a much anticipated earnings report, Tuniu shares continue to fall -- down another 13.6% as of 1:35 p.m. EST.

White arrow declining sharply atop a red stock tickertape display.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Is there a reason for today's pessimism? Was there a reason for last week's optimism?

The answer to both questions could be "yes," or it could be "no." Last week, Tuniu confirmed that it plans to release third-quarter 2020 earnings numbers before the market opens tomorrow.  

Now what

No one seems to know quite what to expect from Tuniu when it reports. So far as I can tell from data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence, only a single analyst follows the stock, and they haven't published estimates for what Tuniu might report for either sales or earnings tomorrow. Yahoo! Finance however, which may have different sources for its data, notes that full-year 2020 sales are expected to be down 47% year over year at Tuniu.

Depending on how you look at it, this could give investors reason to be pessimistic about Tuniu's imminent report, because the numbers will probably be down, or to be optimistic, because if they're not down as much as investors expect, that could be interpreted as an earnings beat and lift the stock.

When you get right down to it, though, we simply don't know what will happen. Tune in tomorrow to find out.

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.