Recreational vehicle manufacturer Thor Industries Inc. has staged a partial recovery from a 65% share-price loss in 2018, as the company’s stock has appreciated roughly 22% year to date.
Motley Fool reported that the RV giant’s swoon in 2018 was precipitated by industry trends. After the first half of the year, RV dealers found themselves with a glut of inventory on their lots as a several-quarter surge of retail demand began to dissipate.
Dealers have since slowed wholesale orders as they seek to right-size their lot inventories, leading to crimped sales growth for vehicle manufacturers over the last few quarters. How quickly have dealer trends reversed?
Recently, Thor shared that during its fourth quarter of fiscal 2018 (the three months ended July 31, 2018), dealer inventories experienced year-over-year double-digit growth. This was followed by single-digit growth in the period corresponding to Thor’s fiscal first quarter of 2019 and a decrease of nearly 11.5% during the company’s recently concluded second fiscal quarter.
We can trace the drastic effect of dealer inventory correction on the company’s financial statements. In the first half of Thor’s fiscal 2019 year (six months ended Jan. 31, 2019), revenue slumped 28%, to $3 billion, causing net income to tumble from $208.2 million in the comparable prior-year period all the way down to a paltry $8.5 million.