The fact that the manufactured housing dealer inventory finance business of Deutsche Financial Services (DFS) is not among the businesses that DFS plans to sell to GE Capital, hurt the stock price of Fleetwood Enterprises Inc. today (Sept. 16).
Fleetwood, a major manufactured home builder and retailer, in addition to being a major RV builder, saw its stock price decline 84 cents, or 11%, today in New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) trading.
Earlier today, DFS, a unit of Germany’s Deutsche Bank AG, announced it plans to sell its RV dealer inventory finance business, and certain other dealer floorplan lending businesses to the Vendor Financial Services (VFS) division of GE Commercial Finance, a unit of GE Capital, the financial services subsidiary of diversified manufacturer General Electric Co.
The DFS/GE Capital deal is expected to close during the fourth quarter.
The fact DFS’ manufactured home dealer inventory finance operation was not included in the proposed transaction with GE Capital creates the possibility that DFS will simply shutdown that business, depriving Fleetwood and other manufactured home builders of a major source of capital.
Despite today’s decline, Fleetwood’s stock price remains well above its 52-week low of $2.37 a share, which was reached a month-ago.
Fleetwood’s 52-week high is $13.50.
Meanwhile, the stock of Thor Industries Inc. headed in the opposite direction today, climbing $1.64 a share, or 5%, to close at $34.06, which it near Thor’s 52-week high of $36.80.
Thor’s stock price apparently rose in anticipation of the release of its fourth fiscal quarter and fiscal year 2002 earnings report, which probably will be disclosed in a week to 10 days.
Thor’s fiscal year ended July 31 and the manufacturer of RVs and transit buses reported its fourth fiscal quarter sales revenue climbed 80% higher and RV sales revenue was up 137% during the May-through-July period. Excluding towable RV builder Keystone, which Thor acquired last Nov. 9, Thor’s fourth fiscal quarter RV sales were up 30% and its full fiscal year RV revenues were up 10%.