What: Shares of timeshare operator Diamond Resorts International Inc. (NYSE:DRII) fell as much as 11% in early trading Monday after the company was featured in an article in The New York Times.
So what: The article highlighted some of the high-pressure tactics Diamond uses to close sales and keep generating fees for customers. High-pressure sales tactics aren't uncommon in the timeshare industry and an email from Diamond to investors dated today says that the company has high satisfaction ratings from customers and follows industry practices.
A greater concern long term is that high-pressure timeshare sales tactics and the contracts that come with them will come under pressure from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. There are rumors around the industry that the agency will be looking to increase oversight, which could threaten their extremely lucrative business.
Now what: Oversight from regulators could put a lot of financial pressure on timeshare companies and disrupt their otherwise lucrative business model. It's why shares have plunged from a 52-week high of $35.42 to a new low of $19.90 today. I don't think the pressure from investors is over, and given the negative publicity, Diamond Resorts isn't a company I would feel comfortable buying into today.