Mainenews reporter

Intuit shares fall on earning miss, weak forecast

Intuit shares fall on earning miss, weak forecast

Shares of TurboTax maker Intuit (INTU) fell sharply amid a broader market selloff on Friday, one day after the software firm reported earnings that fell short of Wall Street expectations and issued a weaker-than-expected financial outlook. The stock of the Mountain View, Calif.-based company closed down 13.26% at $89.28 a share, the biggest drop in more than a decade.

Intuit on Thursday reported fourth-quarter net revenue of $696 million for the three-month period ending July 31, below the $735.9 million forecast by Wall Street analysts. The company reported a 5 cents a share quarterly loss, better than the 11-cent loss analysts had projected. Intuit said it expects revenue of $4.525 billion to $4.6 billion for the current fiscal year. Although those totals would represent growth of 8% to 10%, they were below the $5.04 billion forecast by analysts.

The $3.40 to $3.45 earnings per share guidance Intuit issued for the fiscal year similarly was lower than the $3.82 that analysts expected. Moving to sharpen its focus on its popular software for personal tax-preparation and small business management, Intuit said it would sell three other product lines. They include Demandforce, an automated marketing and communications software; QuickBase, used for managing company projects and reports; and Quicken, Intuit’s initial accounting software.

The planned sales will reduce fiscal year 2016 revenue by approximately $250 million and lower earnings per share by roughly 10 cents, the company said. “We are fully committed to winning in the cloud, and we’re focusing our attention and investments on assets that accelerate our ability to deliver our two strategic goals: first, to be the operating system behind small business success; and second, to do the nation’s taxes. With this focus, we have decided to divest Demandforce, QuickBase, and Quicken,” Intuit President and CEO Brad Smith said in a Thursday conference call with financial analysts. The mixed financial results, divestment plans and stock decline continue a challenging financial period for Intuit.