Home builder Hovnanian Enterprises (NYSE:HOV) has had a tough time of it lately. In its most recent negative development, the company delivered a Q1 that came in well under expectations.
This was in spite of the fact that its revenue grew by 29% on a year-over-year basis to $576 million. The bottom line went in the opposite direction, though, with net loss deepening to more than $16 million ($0.11 per diluted share), from Q1 2015's $14 million.
On average, analysts anticipated that Hovnanian would post revenue of $580 million and a net loss of $0.03 per share.
The company has elected to retreat from some markets, such as San Francisco, following "much analysis of our more challenging divisions and our desire to be a more significant player in our markets with better performance," CEO Ara Hovnanian said on the conference call. Charges related to the company's exit from the Minnesota market amounted to nearly $12 million during the quarter.
Does it matter?
Those charges made a big difference; without them, Hovnanian's loss would have been $1.5 million, a big improvement over the year-ago quarter's adjusted $17.5 million bottom-line shortfall.
Still, the company booked a loss. Home building is expensive, no matter how otherwise successful the economy, and Hovnanian is struggling with its finances. Although it's managed to reduce its indebtedness some, its long-term borrowings still approach the $2 billion level; its revenue for the entirety of fiscal 2015, meanwhile, was just over that mark.
Investors are not going to like having to swallow another net loss -- the company's fourth in the last five quarters. And although it's actually a positive development, the market won't look kindly on Hovnanian's retreat from markets that are lucrative for others. We can expect the company's stock to take a hit from this unhappy set of figures.