Bebe surpasses estimates despite weaker profitFriday, 24 August 2012
Bebe stores inc. (BEBE) Thursday reported a weakening
in profit for the fourth quarter, severely hit by comparable store sales decrease and lower gross margins. However, earnings for the quarter came in ahead of analysts' estimates, as did revenues, reported RTTNews.
Fourth-quarter gross margin slipped to 40.2 percent from 41.1 percent last year. Selling, general and administrative expenses, as a percent of sales, rose to 36.1 percent from 35.2 percent last year, due mainly to higher compensation expenses including incentive compensation.
Regarding the first quarter, the company expects comparable store sales to decrease in the mid to high-single digit range. Bebe expects net loss from continuing operations of 0.01 dollars to 0.04 dollars per share in the first quarter. Analysts currently estimate earnings of 0.04 dollars per share for the quarter. BEBE closed Thursday at 5.46 dollars, losing a 3.19 percent on a volume of 0.34 million shares on the Nasdaq.
Still in Wall Street, Guess stock fell 23 percent in afternoon trading Thursday, but stayed above the company’s 52-week low of 24.23 dollars - reached on Minay 22. Margaret Whitfield of Sterne Agee & Leach lowered the price target to 36 dollars from 41 in dollars a report, writing, “While Europe and Asian businesses were above plan, traffic issues, in part, tied to weak foreign tourist sales impacted Retail. Its accessories business was the weakest in retail but new receipts in handbags in August reflect considerable improvement with added lines to follow.”
Finally, Rue21 Inc.'s (RUE)l second-quarter earnings rose 19 percent as the teen-apparel retailer continued to add stores and increase revenue. Shares rose 1.5 percent to 29.29 dollars in after-hours trading as the company raised its full-year earnings outlook. Through the close of regular trading Thursday, the stock was up 34% year to date.