General Cable Shares Got Crushed: 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 wire-maker General Cable (NYS: BGC) plummeted 19% on Tuesday after its quarterly results and outlook missed Wall Street expectations.

So what: General Cable's third-quarter results -- earnings plunged to $0.07 per share from $0.34 cents in the year-ago period -- indicate just how susceptible it is to highly fickle metal prices, currency shifts, and global demand. On an ugly market day like today, when fears over the world economy are running rampant, General Cable's volatile business model isn't exactly what investors want to be exposed to.

Now what: Looking ahead to the fourth quarter, management sees revenue of just $1.40-$1.45 billion, while analysts were expecting $1.56 billion. In fact, CEO Gregory said that the quarter will be "burdened by the impact of selling higher average cost inventory into a lower and volatile metal price environment." General Cable's short-term prospects certainly aren't rosy, but with the stock flirting with 52-week lows and trading at a forward P/E of roughly six, much of the risk might already be baked in.

Interested in more info onGeneral Cable?Add it to your watchlist.

At the time thisarticle was published Fool contributor Brian Pacampara owns no position in any of the companies mentioned. 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. The Fool's disclosure policy always gets a perfect score.

Copyright © 1995 - 2011 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.