Skechers (NYSE:SKX) may want to check its laces, because the footwear giant keeps tripping itself up. Skechers stock plummeted 16.9% last week -- hitting a new 52-week low in the process -- after posting disappointing quarterly results.
Revenue of $942.4 million for Skechers' third quarter was just 10% ahead of the prior year, and it also fell short of its earlier guidance range of $950 million to $975 million. A decline in its domestic wholesale business ate into growth at the retail level, something that also happened during the second quarter. Earnings of $0.42 a share fell short of Wall Street's profit target, something that has happened in four of the past five quarters.
As bad as the third quarter may have been, guidance was somehow even worse. Skechers is now forecasting just $710 million to $735 million in net sales for the current quarter, and at the midpoint it would represent less than the $726.6 million that it served up during last year's holiday quarter. You have to go all the way back to the second quarter of 2012 to find the last time that Skechers didn't manage to post year-over-year growth on the top line.
Going for an uphill climb
Investors weren't impressed with the report, and at least one Wall Street pro has had enough. Citi analyst Corinna Van der Ghinst downgraded the stock on Friday, knocking her rating from buy to neutral. She is concerned about the challenging near-term visibility, an understandable fear when a company fails to live up to even the low end of its net sales guidance for the current quarter and points to the possibility of a year-over-year decline for the following period. She is slashing her price target from $33 to $21.
Fellow analyst John Kernan at Cowen stuck to his market perform rating. He finds the footwear brand's guidance to be confusing, but he sees the stock itself approaching oversold levels. His silver lining here is that the company is doing a decent job of managing inventory levels and costs, and he feels that there's support here with a valuation in the low $20s.
The stock has taken a beating. This is the second time in a row that Skechers stock plunged after posting uninspiring financials. The shares are trading in the teens for the first time since late 2014. Skechers stock had become a growth stock darling in recent years. The stock soared by at least 50% in each of the four past years, but that streak is coming to rough end in 2016. Skechers needs to turn its wholesale operations around and get growing again. It can't afford to post three rough quarters in a row.