Winnebago Industries Inc. reported today (Dec. 18) that it earned more money during its first fiscal quarter than Wall Street expected, but the company’s stock price fell $4.83 a share, or almost 11%, to close at $40.84 in New York Stock Exchange trading.
Market analyst Schaeffer’s Investment Research described Winnebago’s stock price decline as “strange.”
Winnebago’s net earnings for the three months ended Nov. 30 were up 52% over the same period a year ago on record sales for the September-through-November period. Additionally, Winnebago earned 85 cents a share, while Wall Street, on average, forecasted it would earn 65 cents a share during its first fiscal quarter.
Despite the “pleasant fundamental surprise,” Schaeffer’s investment reports that Winnebago stock closed today “below its 10-week and 20-week moving averages for the first time in almost three months.”
Schaeffer’s looked to activity by market speculators to explain what happened to Winnebago’s shares today. Although “options players have shied away from Winnebago,” Schaeffer’s reports that short sellers, investors who, in effect, are betting that Winnebago’s stock price will decline, “have been moderately busy. There are more than 2.6 million Winnebago shares sold short at the present juncture, resulting in a short-interest ratio of 7.46 times the equity’s average daily volume.”