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Why Liquidity Services, Inc. Stock Popped Today

Some products sold by Liquidity Services, IMAGE SOURCE: Liquidity Services,

What: Shares of Liquidity Services (NASDAQ: LQDT) rose as much as 12.1% early Thursday, then settled to trade up 9% as of 11:00 a.m. EST after the reverse supply chain specialist released stronger-than-expected fiscal second-quarter 2016 results.

So what: Quarterly revenue fell 15.6% year over year, to $86.9 million, driven by a 19.2% decline in gross merchandise volume (GMV), to $153 million. That translated to adjusted EBITDA of $2.9 million, and adjusted net income of $1.1 million, or $0.04 per diluted share. For perspective, GMV was slightly above the midpoint of Liquidity Services' guidance provided last quarter, which called for a range of $140 million to $160 million. The remaining figures were significantly above guidance, which called for adjusted EBITDA ranging from a $3 million loss to earnings of $2 million, and adjusted earnings per diluted share ranging from a loss of $0.11 to breakeven.

Liquidity Services CEO Bill Angrick elaborated:

Our Q2 results demonstrated that we are achieving initial success and benefits from our transformation efforts over the past 18 months to expand our service offering for organizations seeking to extract more value from their supply chains. During the quarter, our commercial marketplaces signed over 30 new accounts, including new and expanded industrial and retail vertical relationships, valuation projects and new returns and asset management services. We also made progress on the build out of our new LiquidityOne platform as we completed initial testing of our first release candidate. We are moving forward with the next phase of development and anticipate increasing our investment in this area as we prepare to launch our initial marketplace on the new platform in the fourth quarter.

Now what: With the caveat that it "remains difficult to forecast the sales and margins of [its] business" in the near term, Liquidity Services expects fiscal third quarter GMV in the range of $150 million to $175 million, adjusted EBITDA ranging from a loss of $3.5 million to a loss of $1.0 million, and adjusted diluted EPS ranging from a loss of $0.13 to a loss of $0.07 -- namely as costs will remain elevated over the near term as Liquidity Services navigates its transition away from maintaining its "as-is" business supported by legacy systems, and moves toward its developing integrated global business and new marketplace platform under LiquidityOne.

In the end, though, while there's still plenty of work to do to ensure the transition continues to progress smoothly, it's no surprise to see Liquidity Services shares trading higher today given its relative outperformance in fiscal Q2.