Smith & Wesson Shares Fall

Rush to buy guns seems to be tapering off


Smith & Wesson shares fell on Friday, a day after the gunmaker reported strong sales and earnings but a disappointing outlook, as the nationwide fever for firearms begins to wane.

Smith & Wesson Holding Corp. (SWHC) dropped 8%, even though the company reported on Thursday that its latest quarterly sales jumped 25% to $171 million. The Springfield, Mass., gunmaker also reported that earnings for the quarter surged to 41 cents per share, compared to 27 cents a year earlier.

"Ongoing increases in our manufacturing capacity, combined with strong consumer demand for firearms, resulted in increased market share and higher sales of our most popular M&P products," Smith & Wesson Chief Executive James Debney said in a statement.

But Rommel Dionisio, gun industry analyst for Wedbush Securities, said investors had a different focus.

Investors were disappointed by the company's "cloudier" than expected forecast for the current quarter, which said sales would be $135 million to $140 million and earnings 20 cents to 22 cents per share.