) posted fourth-quarter fiscal 2012 adjusted earnings of 24 cents
a share that plunged 45.5% year over year on account of lower
holiday sales. However, adjusted earnings surpassed the Zacks
Consensus Estimate by a couple of cents.
Including one time items, Aeropostale reported a loss of 1
cent per share compared with earnings of 32 cents in the
comparable year-ago quarter.
The company's net sales inched down 1% year over year to
$797.7 million but came ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of
Comparable-store-sales (comps) including the e-Commerce
business waned 8% against 7% decrease in the year-ago quarter.
Aeropostale noted that a rise of 5% in units per transaction was
more than offset by a decline of 6% and 7% in transactions and
average unit retail, respectively.
Revenues from e-Commerce including the GoJane business jumped
16% year over year to $96.8 million during the quarter under
review. The company's online sales enable it to generate
additional sales while broadening its existing customer base
worldwide. Alongside, it boosts the visibility and reputation of
Aeropostale as a global firm offering great fashion and
Aeropostale's adjusted gross margin contracted 210 basis
points to 24%, reflecting decreased merchandise margins and
deleveraging of costs.
During the quarter, the company opened 3 Aeropostale and 1
P.S. from Aeropostale store. Alongside, it closed 11 Aeropostale
stores. The company currently operates 984 Aeropostale stores and
100 P.S. from Aeropostale stores.
In fiscal 2013, ARO plans to open 14 Aeropostale stores and 60
P.S. from Aeropostale stores. Alongside, it plans to remodel
around 30 stores, while closing 15 to 20 Aeropostale
Balance Sheet & Guidance
Aeropostale ended the quarter with cash and cash equivalents
of $213.5 million with no debt and shareholders' equity of $410.3
million. Moreover, the company bought back 3.0 million shares for
$40.8 million in fiscal 2012.
Going forward, Aeropostale stated that macro headwinds and
unfavorable inventory position will adversely affect its margins
and in turn its earnings. Consequently, it expects to report loss
per share in the range of 15 cents to 20 cents in the first
quarter of fiscal 2013 compared with earnings of 13 cents in the
prior-year quarter. The current Zacks Consensus Estimate for the
first quarter stands at earnings of 9 cents a share.
Currently, Aeropostale holds a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell),
which reflects the company's sluggish performance.
However, until any further upward revision in the Zacks Rank
on Aeropostale, other stocks worth considering in the retail,
wholesale sector include
Big 5 Sporting Goods Corp.
), both of which hold a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and are
expected to continue with its upbeat performance.
Hot Topic Inc.
) carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) is also worth considering.
AEROPOSTALE INC (ARO): Free Stock Analysis
BIG 5 SPORTING (BGFV): Free Stock Analysis
HOT TOPIC INC (HOTT): Free Stock Analysis
MACYS INC (M): Free Stock Analysis Report
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