What: Shares of Ferrari (NYSE:RACE) fell 16% in January. The Prancing Horse's stock opened the month at $47.29 and closed at $39.77 on January 29.
So what: To some extent, Ferrari shares are still finding their natural level after the company's October initial public offering, when it was spun off by longtime majority shareholder Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (NYSE:FCAU).
Ferrari is an intriguing company to value: It's a solidly profitable purveyor of sports cars with margins that resemble a luxury-goods company's more than they resemble a traditional automaker. But because Ferrari's mystique (and margins) depend on exclusivity, it limits its production -- meaning big sales growth isn't in the cards.
The slowdown in China also has to be weighing on Ferrari to some extent. China has been a massive market for Western luxury goods in recent years, with well-established European luxury brands like Ferrari seeing especially strong success. It's unclear whether Ferrari will take a substantial hit from the Chinese slowdown, but investors looking at the company's prospects over the next few years have to be taking it into account.
Now what: Ferrari is set to report its fourth-quarter and full-year 2015 earnings on Tuesday, February 2. That will give investors a fresh look at how the company is operating now that it's independent of FCA, and -- hopefully -- some better expectations for Ferrari's sales and profit outlook for 2016. I wouldn't buy (or sell) before that earnings report, but any investors interested in Ferrari should obviously listen carefully to the company's guidance.