Ferrari's stock price falls off a cliff

Marchionne Won't Consider An SUV For Vaunted Sportscar Lineup

The stock price skidded. The stock price stalled. Use whatever automotive analogy you want. It was a bad day for Ferrari on the New York Stock Exchange.

Warning that sales growth would slow because of the economic slump in China, Ferrari NV watched its stock price slump accordingly. Shares of the company were down more than 13 percent in afternoon trading, falling to $34.64.

Sprung from the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles less than four months ago, Ferrari's stock has lost a third of its value since its October initial public offering and is nearly half the price of its $62 high set days after the IPO. In a conference call with investors, chairman Sergio Marchionne said the company expected to ship approximately 7,900 vehicles this year.

Marchionne said the company would be "fine" over the long term as long as it maintains a decades-long philosophy of maintaining strong demand. That means Ferrari won't follow some of its sports-car competitors who have broadened their vehicle portfolio's with the addition of SUVs. Marchionne bristled at such a suggestion.

"You have to shoot me first," he told Bloomberg.

But never say never? Previously, Ferrari had restricted its output to 7,000 vehicles per year. The company is already past that number, and Marchionne foresees the possibility that it could rise to approximately 9,000 by 2019. In a regulatory filing, Ferrari said, "we believe we can grow in a controlled manner while preserving the exclusivity of our brand by continuing to explore controlled growth in emerging markets to capitalize on the substantial wealth creation and the growing affluent populations in those markets."

For now, those markets won't include China. Shipments there decreased 22 percent in 2015, even as worldwide output increased.
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