Bed Bath & Beyond Options Bears Win Big on Forecast Flop

The retailer forecast lower-than-expected 2018 profit

Apr 12, 2018 at 10:04 AM
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Shares of Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (NASDAQ:BBBY) have plunged 16% to trade at $18.05 -- hitting a nine-year low of $17.85 out of the gate -- after the homegoods retailer offered up a weak full-quarter profit forecast. After reporting fiscal fourth-quarter adjusted earnings beat of $1.48 per share on inline revenue of $3.7 billion, BBBY said it expects 2018 earnings to arrive in the low-to-mid $2 range, versus the consensus estimate for adjusted per-share profit of $2.76.

Analysts were quick to chime in on the retail stock after earnings, too. No fewer than eight brokerage firms cut their BBBY price targets, with Citigroup and KeyBanc setting the lowest bar at $16 -- representing additional downside of nearly 12% to the stock's current price, and a level not breached since June 2000.

Nevertheless, the stock has been trending lower for the past three years, down nearly 77% from its January 2015 highs just below $80 amid steady pressure from its 10-month moving average. More recently, BBBY's 120-day trendline has contained all rally attempts since last December.

Bearish options traders are certainly profiting from Bed Bath & Beyond's negative earnings reaction. Looking at the weekly 4/13 21-strike put -- home to peak open interest in that short-term series -- which saw significant buy-to-open activity on March 29 and April 11. The closing prices for the put were $1.19 and $0.96, respectively, and at last check, the bid price for the weekly put was $3.30.


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