It's been about a year since I called large-format display maker Daktronics
The cause: a weak second-quarter report, damaged by "supply chain issues" at a recently built manufacturing plant. Also, high hopes for one NFL stadium deal fell through. The effect: a high-flying stock touches down on solid ground again.
I'm a shareholder these days, having bought in on an earlier dip. Even so, this was a welcome return to reality. Maybe now people can buy Daktronics stock again and actually hope for a profit down the line.
It's still a small company that takes large orders from a limited customer base. One scoreboard system in the right stadium can make or break a quarter, and the mildly dampening effect of the lower-cost digital billboard segment can't stop the top and bottom lines from bouncing around like happy rabbits on a caffeine-and-sugar kick. And when the company reports these jumps to investors and analysts, the stock price is sure to take a spastic cue from the results. The jump was positive last November, negative in February, skywards again three months ago, and now this. Take a chill pill!
Daktronics isn't the absolute-worst performer year-to-date. Fellow Fool Rick Munarriz picked a worse example in Vonage
But Daktronics has returned to earth in a big way, as it should. It's still a great business, but now you can get a few shares at a reasonable price. Should you buy in at these 52-week lows? Perhaps. I'll keep the shares I bought over the summer, some 18% ago. These guys can and will do better. Just remember not to hop on after one of those happy hops, skips, and jumps.
Fool contributor Anders Bylund owns shares in Daktronics but holds no other position in any of the companies discussed here. You can check out Anders' holdings if you like. Foolish disclosure keeps you steady without being a downer.