Earnings reports and policy optimism have been the driving factors on Wall Street over the past month, and many investors see no signs of that momentum dissipating any time soon. The potential for Republicans in Congress to cut taxes on businesses continued to stoke stock market gains, and with the majority of companies having produced reported favorable earnings results for last quarter, market participants are pleased that there's fundamental business growth underpinning the rise that the broad market has seen lately.
Yet no matter how good the market trends are, there are always some individual companies facing bad news that sends their stocks plunging. On a mixed Wednesday for the major indexes, 3D Systems (NYSE: DDD), Envision Healthcare (NYSE: EVHC), and Check Point Software Technologies (NASDAQ: CHKP) were among the worst performers. Below, we'll look more closely at these stocks to tell you why they did so poorly.
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3D Systems falls flat
3D Systems plunged 24% in the wake of the third-quarter financial results the 3-D printing specialist reported late Tuesday. Revenue fell 2% compared to the year-earlier quarter, and it swung to an adjusted net loss on the bottom line for the period. Gains in revenue from services weren't enough to offset larger declines in product sales, and without the acquisitions that 3D Systems has made over the past year, the company's performance would have been even weaker. CEO VJ Joshi said that organizational and operational changes should bring long-term success, but the company's withdrawal of guidance for 2017 didn't inspire confidence among shareholders.
Envision sees trouble
Envision Healthcare also sank following the release of its third-quarter financial report, with shares finishing down more than 34%. The provider of physician and ambulatory surgery services saw revenue more than triple due to the company's merger with AmSurg late last year, but adjusted net earnings were less than investors had expected. CEO Christopher Holden pointed to the hurricanes that hit key markets during the quarter as well as longer-term trends toward reduced use of healthcare services as hurting its business, and Envision's board said it would look at strategic alternatives to try to find ways to enhance shareholder value. With Envision stock having already fallen sharply even before its latest drop, investors in the healthcare company are increasingly nervous about whether it can maintain a viable strategic direction.
Check Point sees sluggish revenue trends
Finally, Check Point Software Technologies dropped 12.5%. The cybersecurity expert reported its third-quarter results late Tuesday, which included revenue gains of 6% and a rise of more than 10% in adjusted net income. Yet investors reacted negatively to its guidance for the fourth quarter, and the company said that it planned to continue restructuring its domestic sales team. Check Point has a big opportunity due to the scary increase in the frequency and severity of cyberattacks, and it has already done a good job of executing to take maximum advantage of that trend. It can succeed with its somewhat conservative approach as long as more aggressive rivals don't find ways to cut into its market share.
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Dan Caplinger has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Check Point Software Technologies. The Motley Fool recommends 3D Systems. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.