Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
What: Shares of Chinese clean-tech company SmartHeat
So what: SmartHeat's quarterly numbers were pretty ugly. The company reported a $0.10 loss per share on revenue of $7.9 million. Revenue was down 16% from last year, while the bottom line reversed a $0.05-per-share profit in 2010. Analysts had expected the company to show $11.4 million in revenue and $0.05 in EPS.
Now what: The company blamed tightening fiscal policy in China and rising materials costs as major drivers of the weak quarter. While management seems to think these issues -- particularly the government's fiscal policy initiatives -- will be transitory, it's hard for me to see them becoming more favorable in the near term. Meanwhile, the company provided a laundry list of areas where it expects to make up lost ground. But the list -- which ranges from "maturation of our sales force" to "efficiency of our manufacturing operations" -- simply sounds a lot like "we'll do stuff better."
Underscoring the tougher times ahead, the company slashed full-year earnings guidance to a range of $0.25 to $0.36 per share. Analysts had been estimating $0.71. Even at the new, lower guidance range, the shares of SmartHeat look cheap on an earnings-per-share basis, but that's only if the company actually delivers.
Want to keep up to date on SmartHeat? Add it to your watchlist.
Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.
Fool contributor Matt Koppenheffer does not have a financial interest in any of the companies mentioned. You can check out what Matt is keeping an eye on by visiting his CAPS portfolio, or you can follow Matt on Twitter @KoppTheFool or on his RSS feed. The Fool's disclosure policy prefers dividends over a sharp stick in the eye.