Terrible Earnings Sends Franks International NV's Stock Sinking

By Markets Fool.com

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What: Shares of Franks International (NYSE: FI) are getting hammered on Thursday and were down more than 10% at 11:30 a.m. EDT.

So what: Fueling the sell-off was the company's abysmal second-quarter report. Revenue slumped 52.5% year over year to $120.9 million, which missed the consensus estimate by $19.1 million. That led to a much steeper loss than analysts were expecting, with the company reporting an adjusted loss of $22 million, or $0.14 per share, which was $0.13 per share steeper than analysts' anticipated.

Driving the company's poor showing, according to CEO Gary Luquette, was the fact that the "offshore tubular running services business were adversely impacted as a majority of rigs that exited the market were serviced by Frank's and located in our two primary regions of West Africa and the U.S. Gulf of Mexico." Because of that impact the company announced it was slashing its dividend by 50% to improve its cash flow as it navigates a challenging market.

Franks International was a bit harder hit than some other oil-field service peers during the quarter, partially due to its focus on those two primary markets. Larger diversified rival Weatherford International (NYSE: WFT), for example, beat analysts' expectations due in part to strength in Eastern Hemisphere markets, which saw a 4% increase in revenue over last quarter. That helped offset the sharp activity reduction that Weatherford International also experienced in West Africa. As a result, Weatherford International's revenue decline was a slightly more moderate 41% over last year's second quarter and down just 11% over last quarter compared to a 21% sequential decline at Franks International.

Now what: While times were tough in the second quarter, Franks International sees some positive signs on the horizon. Luquette noted that the company has had "increased inquires to our U.S. onshore, and Tubular Sales businesses give us some confidence that portions of our business are stabilizing." While he is not ready to call a bottom in the company's results, he believes that decisions, such as the one to reduce its dividend, position the company to not only navigate through the current market, but capture the upside of the eventual upcycle.

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