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Why Balchem Shares Plunged 11.9% Today

Travis Hoium, The Motley Fool

What happened 

Shares of supplement and chemical maker Balchem (NASDAQ: BCPC) fell as much as 11.9% in trading Thursday after the company reported second-quarter earnings. Shares closed down 11.6%, and there didn't seem to be any enthusiasm to buy the dip today. 

So what

Revenue was down 1.3% in the quarter to $161.6 million as sales of industrial products fell 47% to $7.3 million for the segment. Net income was up 0.8% to $19.8 million, or $0.61 per share. 

Supplements on wooden spoons on a table.

Image source: Getty Images.

The problem for the stock today was that analysts were expecting $166.4 million in revenue and earnings of $0.71 per share, so results were well below expectations. When a company misses earnings estimates by that big a margin, it's easy to see why the sell-off happened today. 

Now what

Digging deeper into the earnings report, Balchem's three biggest units -- human nutrition, animal nutrition, and specialty products -- all grew by single digits.

It was really the industrial segment that caused the down quarter. It primarily serves the oil & gas industry, which can be extremely volatile. I take more from the positive -- the growth in Balchem's three biggest markets -- than I do from the weakness in a small, volatile product line. That presents a long-term opportunity for investors willing to buy the dip.  

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Travis Hoium has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Balchem. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.