Financial stocks have been in the doghouse lately. Subprime has continued to be a bearish buzzword, Bear Stearns
The numbers were positively impressive. The company rang up $141 million in sales for the quarter, a 137% bump over last year's $59 million. The bottom line was likewise smoking -- earnings per share shot up 227% year over year to $1.47.
Of the firm's two segments, financial advisory and merchant banking, the former was the big winner. Revenue for the financial advisory division was up 136% versus the prior year. The results were thanks to a laundry list of major transactions on which Greenhill provided services. Among them were the $23 billion sale of Alliance Boots to KKR, the merger of Dynegy
Despite the results, which beat analysts' expectations by more than 80%, Greenhill's stock couldn't fight the market's current and fell 1.7%. Investors are obviously concerned about the market's overall direction, and in particular about what's ahead for investment bankers like Greenhill if the market does start to sag. They could also be wondering whether the results are repeatable, given that Greenhill's second-quarter revenue was not only much higher than the second quarter of last year, it was also triple that of the first quarter of 2007.
For now, at least, Greenhill's pipeline of pending transactions looks impressive. The firm is the sole advisor to IHOP in its recently announced plans to buy Applebee's
M&A deals can turn cold pretty quickly if the market heads south, but it looks like Greenhill could be locked and loaded for some more good results in the near term. The firm also has a lot more exposure to deals outside the U.S. than many of the other U.S.-based boutique banks, so strength overseas could buoy some weakness at home.
Despite good results from the company, until there's some light at the end of the tunnel for the finance stocks, Greenhill's stock may have to continue fighting upstream.
More financial Foolishness:
- The View From Greenhill
- Quick Take: Bear Gets Mauled
- The Investment Banking Business: Money Management
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Fool contributor Matt Koppenheffer does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned. The Fool's disclosure policy has never once been caught with its pants down. Of course, it doesn't actually wear pants ...