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Crane (CR) Declines 35.7% YTD: What's Hurting the Stock?

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Shares of Crane Company (CR - Free Report) have declined since the beginning of this year. The decline in share price primarily reflects the adverse impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on the company’s operational performance.

Notably, Crane belongs to the Zacks Diversified Operations industry, which, in turn, comes under the Zacks Conglomerates sector.

Year to date, the company’s shares have lost 35.7% compared with the industry’s and the sector’s decline of 14.5% each. Notably, the S&P 500 has declined 3.8% during the same period.



Crane currently carries a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell).

Factors Affecting the Company

The coronavirus outbreak has been impacting Crane’s operations. For instance, in the first quarter of 2020, its organic sales recorded a decline of 10% primarily on account of the negative impacts of the coronavirus outbreak. Also, the pandemic had an adverse impact of 15-20 cents per share on the quarter’s earnings. The company expects the pandemic-related uncertainties to continue impacting its operations and end markets. Notably, its second-quarter sales are expected to be $650-$660 million, suggesting a decline from $797.9 million generated in the first quarter. Also, adjusted earnings for the quarter are anticipated to be 40-50 cents, indicating a decline from $1.15 generated in the first quarter.

Moreover, a highly leveraged balance sheet remains concerning for the company. Notably, its long-term debt at the end of first-quarter 2020 remained high at $842.2 million. Also, in the quarter, its interest expenses increased 5% year over year. Notably, the company’s total debt-to-total capital stood at 46.5% at the end of the first quarter, suggesting a rise from 40.2% recorded in the previous quarter. In addition, on a sequential basis, the company’s times interest earned weakened from 4.6x to 4.1x at the end of the first quarter.

Moreover, the company’s international operations have exposed it to geopolitical issues, macroeconomic challenges and unfavorable movements in foreign currencies. For instance, in the first quarter, forex woes adversely impacted its sales by $7 million. For 2020, the company anticipates unfavorable movements in foreign currencies to adversely impact sales by 0.5-1%.

In addition, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for the company’s earnings is pegged at $3.75 for 2020 and $4.86 for 2021, marking declines of 28.4% and 25.7% from the respective 60-day-ago figures.

Stocks to Consider

Some better-ranked stocks in the sector are Activision Blizzard, Inc. (ATVI - Free Report) , TEGNA Inc. (TGNA - Free Report) and RCI Hospitality Holdings, Inc. (RICK - Free Report) . While Activision Blizzard and TEGNA currently sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), RCI Hospitality carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Activision Blizzard delivered a positive earnings surprise of 31.34%, on average, in the trailing four quarters.

TEGNA delivered a positive earnings surprise of 4.67%, on average, in the trailing four quarters.

RCI Hospitality delivered a positive earnings surprise of 293.40%, on average, in the trailing four quarters.

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Our research shows that 5 cutting-edge stocks could skyrocket from the exponential increase in demand for “stay at home” technologies. This could be one of the biggest buying opportunities of this decade, especially for those who get in early.

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