Monster Worldwide Shares Plunged: What You Need to Know

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 online job-search maven Monster Worldwide (NYS: MWW) plunged to new 52-week lows, as far as 12.2% below Wednesday's closing price, before bouncing back to a less terrifying 8% fall.

So what: The Fed just reported another rise in unemployment claims, which is horrible news for placement services in this ultra-tight job market. The pain is shared with other job finders -- both LinkedIn (NAS: LNKD) and Robert Half International (NYS: RHI) dropped as much as 7%, and Dice (NYS: DHX) rolled to a 9.3% value loss.

Now what: Sector-wide effects notwithstanding, Monster has suffered more than anyone else in the sector -- so far in 2011, the stock is down by more than 67% and still trades at 170 times trailing earnings. If the company can turn things around before this job market kills it, Monster becomes a very exciting bounce play -- and the balance sheet is still in decent shape. But maybe we should wait before taking the Monster plunge, lest we'd catch a falling knife long before hitting the ground floor.

Interested in more info on Monster Worldwide? Add it to your watchlist.

At the time this article was published Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.

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