Wall Street Watch Tuesday: WD-40 Becomes a Squeaky Wheel


WD-40 (WDFC) may not be the all-weather company that investors thought they were buying. The company behind the namesake multi-purpose lubricant posted disappointing quarterly results after Monday's market close.

Revenue slipped 6% to $84.9 million in its fiscal fourth quarter, and net income declined 12% to $0.56 a share. You'll be seeing plenty of companies post lower financial results this challenging earnings season, but it wasn't supposed to be that way for WD-40.

Analysts figured that the company would actually grow both ends of its income statement, clocking in with a profit of $0.70 a share on $93.7 million in revenue.

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WD-40 makes more than just its signature handyman spray. This is also the company behind Lava industrial-strength soap, X-14 bathroom cleaners, and Carpet Fresh odor neutralizer.

The company's wide range of household staples should deliver reliable results, but that's just not happening here. WD-40 has now posted lower than expected profitability in three of the past four quarters.

WD-40 argues that some of the sales slipped into the new fiscal year, particularly in the fiscally wobbly Europe. It's easy for investors to be skeptical, especially since its guidance -- while encouraging in terms of revenue -- merely keeps up with Wall Street's profit target.

WD-40 has plenty to prove. For starters, can its multi-purpose toolbox staple get it out of its current jam?

Other Things Worth Watching

• Joe's Jeans (JOEZ) proved to be a nice fit. The premium denim specialist posted a profit of $0.02 a share on a 25% surge in net sales. Analysts were actually expecting a quarterly deficit on a mere 15% pop on the top line. Between a 26% surge in net wholesale sales and a healthy 7% uptick in same-store sales on the retail side, folks apparently aren't shying away from an expensive pair of jeans if the brand and fit are right.

• There will be another hat for priceline.com (PCLN) CEO Jeffery Boyd to wear. The travel booking website operator revealed on Monday night that Board Chairman Ralph Bahna will retire next year. Boyd -- who is already both president and CEO -- will succeed Bahna as chairman. Some investors prefer to see different executives wearing these different hats, but the concentration does make the one helmsman more accountable.

Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz does not own shares in any of the stocks in this article. The Motley Fool owns shares of Priceline.com. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Priceline.com.

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