ARLINGTON, Va. (TheStreet) -- Strayer Education (STRA) shares tumbled nearly 25% in the first minutes of trading Monday after the postsecondary education company warned of slower student enrollment growth.
Strayer said late Friday that new student enrollments across its campus and online education system decreased by 20% for the 2011 winter term, which began Jan. 3, even as continuing student enrollments increased by 10%.
Piper Jaffray analyst Peter P. Appert slashed his price target on Strayer Education shares by $17 to $119, maintaining a neutral rating on the stock.
The analyst noted that "Strayer's much weaker than expected [fourth-quarter] enrollment growth likely portends similar sharp declines in enrollment growth from most of the postsecondary education companies over the next several quarters. We expect deteriorating fundamentals to keep the postsecondary group in a near-term trading range, even in the context of easing regulatory concerns. We see no rush to own STRA shares or for broad industry exposure."
The operator of Strayer University saw its shares shed 24.3% to $116.05 Monday morning.
Everest Colleges parent Corinthian Colleges (COCO) saw its shares tumble 11.2% to $4.69 while DeVry (DV) lost 13.4% to $41.17. Apollo Group (APOL), which is due to report a 12.3% drop in fiscal-first quarter earnings to $1.35 per share after the closing bell Monday, was lower by 5.9% to $35.76.
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
- Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV