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Wingstop flies lower as outlook overshadows 2017 revenue and earnings beat

The top and bottom-line growth came despite a “difficult” year for Wingstop and the restaurant industry as a whole, with diners opting to cut back spending on things like eating out

chicken wings
There are more than 1,000 Wingstop restaurants around the world

Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ:WING) topped forecasts with its 2017 earnings, but a weaker-than-expected outlook for the year ahead sent the chicken wings restaurant chain lower in pre-market trade on Friday.

The Dallas-based company reported net income of US$10.5mln, or 36 US cents a share, in the three months ended December 30, compared with US$4.3mln, or 15 US cents a share, in the year-ago period.

Top and bottom life growth came despite difficult growth

Adjusted for one-time items, quarterly earnings rose to 17 US cents a share, while revenues also increased from US$24.6mln last time around to US$28.3mln.

Wall Street number crunchers had been looking for 16 US cents a share on revenue of US$27.5mln.

The top and bottom-line growth came despite a “difficult” year for Wingstop and the restaurant industry as a whole, with diners opting to cut back spending on things like eating out.

Analysts have been arguing that the tax cuts implemented by Donald Trump should help to the boost the industry but Wingstop’s outlook for 2018 fell short of Street expectations.

For the year ahead, the company estimates earnings of 75 US cents a share, while analysts surveyed by FactSet had estimated earnings of 83 US cents a share.

“Despite facing one of the most difficult - if not the most difficult - year in our 23-year history, Wingstop was able to achieve strong results for our shareholders,” said President and chief executive Charlie Morrison.

“In 2017, the Company celebrated key milestones with the opening of our 100th international location, 14 consecutive years of same-store sales growth, and the launching of a quarterly dividend.”

Wingstop shares dived 10.2% to US$42.00 in pre-market trading on Friday.

Quick facts: Wingstop

Price: 121.22 USD

NASDAQ:WING
Market: NASDAQ
Market Cap: $3.59 billion
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