Urban Outfitters Inc.
) fell 2.8% after the company released sales data for the fourth
quarter and full-year fiscal 2014, which turned out to be lower
than expected. Sales for the quarter came in at $905.9 million
falling short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $926 million.
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However, what provided some cushion to the stock was the
year-over-year growth witnessed in the topline. Sales grew 6%
buoyed by strong performance across Anthropologie and Free People
brands, partially offset by softness seen at Urban Outfitters'
brand and unfavorable weather conditions.
Comparable Retail segment net sales (including comparable
direct-to-consumer channel) rose 1%, which was also below
analysts' expectations. Comparable Retail segment net sales
increased 10% at Anthropologie and 20% at Free People but
declined 9% at Urban Outfitters. Net sales grew 24% at the
For the fiscal year ended Jan 31, 2014, Urban Outfitters' net
sales rose 10% year over year to $3,086.6 billion. However, this
lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3,094 million. Net sales
at wholesale segment grew 20% while comparable Retail segment net
sales rose 6%.
Further, the company opened 38 outlets during the fiscal 2014
comprising 16 Urban Outfitters outlets, 13 Free People stores and
9 Anthropologie outlets. It also closed 1 store of Urban
Outfitters and 2 stores of Anthropologie brands.
Notably, on Jan 10, 2014, Urban Outfitters' posted healthy sales
data for the holiday season (November and December). Sales grew
8% year over year to $716 million in the said period while
comparable Retail segment net sales (including comparable
direct-to-consumer channel) rose 3%.
The holiday season was a tough one as intense promotional
activity marred profits without creating a significant increase
in demand. While some retailers emerged strong, others could not
manage to do so.
Costco Wholesale Corp.
L Brands, Inc
) emerged strong by recording comparable-store sales growth of 4%
and 9% respectively, above analysts' expectations.
At present, Urban Outfitters' has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Other
better ranked retail stocks include
Christopher & Banks Corporation
) which carries a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).