Harley Sales Drop!!!!

Harley-Davidson Inc. (NYSE:HOG) announced today that it will be cutting bike shipments and lowered its earnings estimates significantly for the fiscal year 2007. The Milwaukee-based company said that it anticipates earning $3.69 to $3.77 a share for the year. The company earned $3.93 per share in 2006. Analysts had predicted a climb in Harley's earnings this year, with the average estimate for 2007 prior to today's announcement sitting at $4.12 a share.

The earnings guidance from HOG is nothing short of dismal. It is extremely concerning that HOG is not only saying that August sales have tumbled, but also dramatically lowering 2008 estimates, and totally doing away with their guidance on 2009. This points that something bigger is going on at Harley-Davidson, not just a simple blip on the radar screen. The company is having trouble with operating margins and the demand for its newer products. HOG used to be a trusty stock that one could always count on, but it seems that the times have changed of late. I think investors would be wise to stay away from this company until they prove to be a worthy investment again.

Perhaps people are starting to get spooked with the current markets and the general uneasiness with all this talk of recession. The first thing to go in markets like that are the luxury items, like a $30,000 bike!

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