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The Five Dumbest Things on Wall Street This Week: June 8

2. Mattress "Mob" Wars

Holy cannoli Tempur-Pedic (TPX - Get Report)! If you're already going to the mattresses in a price war with Sealy (ZZ) and Select Comfort (SCSS) then why on earth would you take on Wall Street as well?

In a rub-out reminiscent of Sonny Corleone at the tollbooth in The Godfather, traders gunned down shares of Tempur-Pedic by 49% Wednesday. The bloodbath was caused by the high-end mattress-maker slashing its second-quarter and full-year earnings guidance by more than 30% as a result of stiff competition in North America. Shares of Sealy and Select Comfort fell 5% and 21% in sympathy.

Back in April, Tempur-Pedic told analysts it expected a vigorous full-year profit of $3.80 to $3.95 per share on $1.6 billion to $1.65 billion in revenue. This week, however, the company's brass drastically reversed itself, telling the Street it now sees a sleepy profit of $2.70 per share on $1.43 billion in revenue.

Mama Mia what a miss! Even Fredo could do a better job managing expectations than these not-so-wise guys.

"Sales trends in our North America business during the second quarter have been disappointing and below plan, primarily due to changes in the competitive environment, including an unprecedented number of new competitive product introductions which have been supported by aggressive marketing and promotion," said CEO Mark Sarvary referring to the flood of new foam mattresses introduced by Tempur-Pedic's rivals.

As part of its plan to eliminate its foes, the high-end player is going down and dirty. Tempur-Pedic is chopping nearly 20% off the suggested retail price of its popular Cloud Supreme mattress set this summer.

Yep, it's going to be one bloody battle with red ink splattering across all the mattress-makers. But on the bright side, at least the losers will be quite comfortable while sleeping with the fishes.
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