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Why GoPro Inc. Stock Dropped Today

By Steve Symington – Jan 19, 2016 at 4:24PM

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Shareholder lawsuits have emerged on the heels of last week's painful preliminary results. Here's what investors need to know.

What: Continuing last week's slide on the heels of releasing painful preliminary fourth-quarter results, shares of GoPro (GPRO 1.84%) fell as much as 10.5% early Tuesday, then partially recovered to close down 7.8%.

So what: Perhaps predictably, it also didn't help that several law firms today announced class action lawsuits on behalf of shareholders over alleged securities violations by GoPro. In part, one claims GoPro failed to adequately disclose weak sales of its flagship HERO series cameras in recent quarters, all in contrast to "inflated and unrealistic" guidance.

Whether those allegations prove to have merit remains to be seen. But if one thing is sure based on GoPro's latest preliminary results, it's that GoPro suffered a terrible holiday quarter in which revenue declined more than 30% year over year, due in large part to lower-than-anticipated sell-through at retailers in the first half of its quarter. And it's difficult on the surface to say GoPro inflated guidance; up until last week's announcement, analysts were anticipating a more modest 19% decline, which was near the lower end of GoPro's already-disappointing guidance issued in October.

Now what: As it stands, GoPro investors find themselves at a crossroads trying to determine whether to cut their losses now, or to buy more with shares already down 77% over the past year. Personally, I prefer to wait until we receive more color from management when they release official results early next month -- especially as it pertains to new product launches that could reinvigorate growth in the coming year. If GoPro can learn from its mistakes and execute those launches without a hitch, the stock could prove an enticing buy at today's levels.

Steve Symington has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends GoPro. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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