Why Workday Inc. Stock Gained 24.6% Last Month

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What happened

Shares of enterprise software expert Workday (NASDAQ: WDAY) rose 24.6% in August 2018, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence. In a relatively quiet month, investors and analysts alike boosted the stock in anticipation of a strong second-quarter report in early September.

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So what

At least five analyst firms published bullish reports on Workday last month, citing good-looking industry checks ahead of the second-quarter business update and a solid deal pipeline beyond that event.

The actual report delivered on those promises by beating Wall Street's consensus targets across the board. However, Workday's stock closed 9% lower the next day as management's third-quarter guidance targets failed to impress.

Now what

It's not terribly surprising to see Workday's ultra-volatile stock making wild swings around any earnings presentation. It's just how this stock rolls. Even now, on the heels of solid gains in August and a sharp correction in early September, Workday investors are enjoying a market-stomping 33% return in 52 weeks and a 16% three-month gain. And since the stock trades at a hair-raising 93 times forward earnings estimates or 188 times trailing free cash flows, you should expect Workday's wild swings to continue unabated.

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Anders Bylund has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Workday. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.