What: Shares of hotel chain La Quinta Holdings Inc (NYSE:LQ) fell as much as 13% Thursday after the company reported earnings. At 2:51 p.m., shares were trading down about 9.7%.
So what: Third-quarter revenue was up 3% to $279.1 million and net income jumped 33% to $17.1 million. Revenue topped the $278.1 million Wall Street was expecting, but adjusted earnings of $0.19 per share fell a penny short of expectations.
Management also reaffirmed previous full-year guidance of RevPAR growth of 3.5% to 4.5% and pro forma adjusted EBITDA of $393 million to $400 million and announced a $100 million share repurchase program.
Now what: The slight earnings miss was clearly traders' focus this morning, but long-term I think the trends are positive for La Quinta. Revenue is growing and management said it has a pipeline of 221 hotels that could add another 19,500 rooms to the network. And the share repurchase plan is significant given the company's $2 billion market cap. Long-term I think this is a great buying opportunity even though La Quinta missed Wall Street's guess at earnings this quarter.