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CRA International (CRAI)

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CRA International's (CRAI) first quarter earnings drastically lagged behind the Zacks Consensus Estimate due to significant dip in top-line growth on weak utilization rates.

The company appears to have fallen into a repeated pattern of delivering disappointing quarterly results, then exceeding lowered expectations, before disappointing once again. The company's operating environment remains challenging, with slowing client demand and weak utilization rates as a result of recent restructuring activities.

While overall near-term visibility remains misty, given the current volatile market trends, we believe the company's initiatives will be able to generate positive results in the long term. Currently, however, we anticipate investors to demand evidence of management having properly addressed the operational problems before warranting a higher multiple to CRAI shares.

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