Financial Performance

3M Shares Tumble on Lowered 2018 Guidance

The stock matched its biggest single-day decline in more than nine years but the company sees "sustained profitable growth in 2018."
Matthew HellerApril 25, 2018

3M’s stock matched its biggest single-day decline in more than nine years after the industrial and consumer products maker trimmed its full-year guidance ranges for profit and revenue.

3M on Tuesday posted better-than-expected revenue for the first quarter and earnings that were in line with estimates but investors drove its shares down 6.8% to $201.13.

The selloff was the biggest decline for any day since 3M shed 6.8% on Dec. 1, 2008, when the Dow plummeted 7.7% in the midst of the Great Recession. The stock has now fallen 22.2% since its Jan. 26, 2018 closing record of $258.63.

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“The company hasn’t missed earnings expectations since the first quarter of 2015, but the stock has declined on the day earnings were revealed in eight of the past 13 quarters,” MarketWatch noted.

Tuesday’s drop came after 3M announced it now expects to see organic growth between 3% and 4% and earnings between $10.20 and $10.55 per share for the year, down from earlier guidance of organic growth between 3% and 5% and earnings of $10.20 to $10.70 a share. It cited softness in its automotive aftermarket, oral care, and consumer electronics businesses.

“As I look at our first-quarter performance, there are many positives,” CEO Inge Thulin said in an earnings call. “3M is strong and we have the experience, market position and capabilities to continue delivering sustained profitable growth in 2018 and well into the future.”

In the first quarter, 3M showed organic growth of 3%, with positive growth across all business groups. Sales rose 7.7% to $8.3 billion while adjusted earnings came in at $2.50 per share.

Analysts had expected earnings of $2.50 per share on $8.2 billion in revenue.

On an unadjusted basis, 3M’s net income fell to $602 million, or 98 cents per share, from $1.3 billion, or $2.16 per share. Profit was hurt in part by a jump in operating expenses from $5.9 billion to $7.3 billion.

“Overall, we see [3M] as a well run company with leading positions in many of its sectors,” analyst Jim Corridore at CFRA said.