Not-So-Splashy Earnings for SeaWorld, Retails Fails and Cisco’s Mixed Messages


Image courtesy of tor00722/

Image courtesy of tor00722/

Shares of SeaWorld (SEAS) appear to be evaporating by 33% today after the amusement park company forecasted a decline of 6-7% with a lot of help from the very unflattering docu-drama “Blackfish.” The film, which takes a look at how killer whales in captivity are treated, seemed to put a damper on traffic to SeaWorld, especially at its San Diego location. The film had its debut just two months before SeaWorld’s IPO. Coincidence? Hmm. This marks the first time “Blackfish” has actually been mentioned with respect to SeaWorld’s earnings. Wall Street had predicted the company would pull in revenues of $447 million. But no such luck as revenues came in closer to the $405 million mark. To make matters worse, revenue was $415 million this time last year.

July retail blues…

Image courtesy of renjith krishnan/

Image courtesy of renjith krishnan/

Just when things were starting to look up, leave it to the month of July to put a damper on our fiscal spirits. That’s because, according to the US Commerce Department, US retail sales disappointed. How much did they disappoint? Well…they flat-lined. Sales flatlined despite jobs growth. Yes all that exciting job growth that we have been seeing the last few months could not pull July out of its lousy retail funk. Apparently, even all those people cashing in all their brand new employment checks still need a bit more time before they decide to part with their funds. The other little issue at play is that even though sales did grow in the clothing, personal care and, of course, groceries categories, those gains were offset by losses in other retail sectors. Let’s just hope (and spend) that this was a minor hiccup in a major fiscal recovery and not some evil sign of things to come.

Speaking of unemployment numbers…

Image courtesy of xedos4/

Image courtesy of xedos4/

IT provider Cisco came out with its fourth quarter earnings and actually beat analysts’ estimates. The company pulled in about $12.4 billion in fourth quarter revenue while Wall Street expected $12.1 billion. But. There’s always a but isn’t there? This one is about the company also announcing its plans to cut 8% of its workforce. In case you were wondering, that translates to 6,000 soon-to-be ex Cisco employees who will need to redo their LinkedIn profiles.

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