Harley shares roar after solid earnings report
The company's US motorcycle sales rose despite a harsh winter, sending the stock up 8%.
By Christopher Freeburn
The stock was up 8 percent by midday Tuesday after the storied motorcycle maker said it grew revenue 10.2 percent from a year earlier to $1.73 billion, which drove profits up 18.7 percent to $265.9 million. On a per-share basis, earnings of $1.21 easily bested the $1.07 expected by Wall Street analysts.
Despite snowy weather, U.S. motorcycle sales increased 3 percent. By contrast, Asia-Pacific region motorcycle sales vaulted more than 20 percent, while sales in Europe, the Middle East and Africa climbed 8.2 percent. Worldwide, the company said it sold 57,415 motorcycles during the quarter, including 35,730 in the U.S.
In a release, CEO Keith Wandell noted that Harley was "encouraged by the continued growth of new Harley-Davidson motorcycle sales in Europe."
Harley-Davidson is standing by its previously issued guidance of between 7 percent and 9 percent growth in motorcycle shipments this year. The company also said it anticipates second-quarter motorcycle shipment growth of between 9 percent and 15 percent compared to last year.
Tuesday's gains brought Harley's shares back into the black year-to-date, at a 5 percent gain for 2014.
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Investors are anxious to see if hiring can maintain its strong pace in the second half of the year.
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