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Why Alliance Data Systems Shares Plunged Today

Shares of Alliance Data Systems (NYSE: ADS) have plunged today, down by 12% as of 11:30 a.m. EST, after the company reported fourth-quarter earnings results. While the marketing and customer loyalty specialist beat on the bottom line, it missed on the top line. So what. Revenue in the fourth quarter fell 2% to $2.06 billion, which was below the $2.12 billion in sales that analysts were expecting. Pro forma revenue was $2.12 billion, below the company's expectations due to "strategic repositioning at Card Services and softness at Epsilon," CEO Ed Heffernan said in a statement. Alliance Data said the first half of 2019 will see "muted" growth in adjusted earnings per share as it completes the divestiture of held-for-sale assets, a process that it started in the second half of 2018.

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