Once the rumors and news reports began flying April 9, a much different picture unfolded with HLF's stock. It traded 5,877,800 shares in a range between $36.21 and $38.95 and finally closed at $36.95. On April 10, the stock closed at $37.20 on less than half of the average daily volume of 6.4 million shares. Herbalife reports first-quarter earnings April 29 after the market closes. Analysts estimate, on average, an increase in earnings per share of over 20% to $1.06. Revenue will rise more than 15% to $1.11 billion, they say. Looking at the one-year chart of HLF, you can see the effects of the dichotomy between the diluted, year-over-year EPS and the trailing 12-month revenue-per-share. Add in the saga of Icahn versus Ackman, and you have a full picture that's either fraught with peril or ripe with auspiciousness. HLF data by YCharts
This is an ongoing story that offers both entertainment value and possible volatility for shareholders and potential investors. The importance for publicly traded companies like HLF and SKX to produce confirmations of the audited financial statements under these circumstances seems essential. Most likely a re-audit of these companies' financial statements will need to be done by a new accounting firm, which will no doubt be rather expensive. Look for news from both as to how, when and at whose expense this process will be completed. Traders may find many opportunities to "buy the rumors and sell the news" as this situation and the yet-to-be-resolved tug-of-war between the mighty activist investors continues. I'm putting a note on my desk to keep a close eye on HLF especially between now and April 29. Get ready, get set, not quite yet! Disclosure: As of the time of publication, the author wasn't long or short shares of any of the companies mentioned in this article. Follow @m8a2r1 This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.