(Filed Under Financial and General Interest News). “A decline of about 20 percent” in Victoria’s Secret comparable sales is expected for February, reported parent company L Brands on February 22nd. The lingerie retailer had noted, earlier this month, sharp declines in its direct to consumer sales both in its most recent quarter, and in January.
L Brands as a whole, which also owns Bath & Body Works, Pink, La Senza and Henri Bendel, “expects to report a mid-to-high-teens decrease in February comparable sales, below expectations for a mid-single digit decrease,” that it had predicted at the start of the month.
Additional elements in the unexpected declines are “a mid-single digit decline at Bath & Body Works,” and “The exit of swim and apparel at Victoria’s Secret,” which “is negatively impacting total company comparable sales by about 6 percentage points.”
L Brands stated that “Earnings per share for the fourth quarter ended January 28, 2017, were $2.18 compared to $2.15 for the quarter ended January 30, 2016. Fourth quarter operating income decreased 8 percent to $987.6 million compared to $1.078 billion last year, and net income was $631.7 million compared to $636.0 million last year.”
“Net sales for the fourth quarter ended January 28, 2017, were $4.489 billion, an increase of 2 percent compared to $4.395 billion for the quarter ended January 30, 2016. Comparable sales for the fourth quarter ended January 28, 2017, were flat. For the fourth quarter, the exit of the swim and apparel categories had a negative impact of 2 percentage points and 4 percentage points to total company and Victoria’s Secret comparable sales, respectively.”
L Brands earnings “for the year ended January 28, 2017, were $3.98 compared to $4.22 for the year ended January 30, 2016. Full-year operating income was $2.003 billion compared to $2.192 billion last year, and net income was $1.158 billion compared to $1.253 billion last year.”
Looking ahead at the full year, the company predicted “2017 full-year earnings per share to be between $3.05 and $3.35, including earnings per share between $0.20 and $0.25 in the first quarter. The 2017 earnings per share forecast includes negative impacts related to the exit of the swim and apparel categories at Victoria’s Secret, continued investment in China and investment in real estate at Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works.” — NM
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