Markets

Sector Update: Consumer

Consumer stocks were narrowly lower this afternoon, with shares of consumer staples companies in the S&P 500 slipping about 0.1%. Shares of consumer discretionary firms in the S&P 500 were off 0.3%.

In company news, shares of Francesca's Holdings Corp ( FRAN ) slid to an all-time low Tuesday after the clothier reported Q1 earnings and revenue below analyst forecasts and moved to reduce much of its slow-selling inventory. It also cut its outlook for the fiscal year ending next January.

FRAN shares were down 13.2% at $13.26 apiece in recent trade, earlier sinking to a worst-ever $13.15 a share, after the company said it earned $8.6 million, or $0.20 per share, during the three months ended May 3. That was down from a $10.9 million profit in the year-ago period and missed the Street view by $0.02 per share.

Net sales rose 8.1% over the same quarter last year to to $85.4 million but still lagged the Capital IQ consensus by around $2.78 million.

Looking forward, FRAN reduced its per-share earnings projections for the fiscal year by as much as $0.14 from its prior outlook to a new range of $1.05 to $1.17 per share. It also cut expected FY15 sales by $10 million to a range of $387 million to $399 million. Analysts, on average, are looking for a FY15 profit of $1.21 per share on $397.91 million in sales.

For the current quarter ending in July, the company is forecasting EPS of $0.24 to $0.29 on between $98 million to $103 million in net sales, saying its guidance reflects May sales trends and the company's "plans to dispose of sufficient slow moving inventory."

The Street is expecting FRAN to earn $0.36 per share on $103.94 million in sales during Q2.

FRAN shares were down 13.6% at $13.21 apiece in recent trade, earlier sinking to a worst-ever $13.12 a share.

In other sector news,

(+) CHS, (+8.3%) Reportedly is exploring a going-private transaction, with the apparel retailer said to be in talks "with several private equity groups," according to the Financial Times, citing sources familiar with the situation.

(-) RSH, (-10.1%) Q1 net loss widens to $98.3 mln, or $0.97 a share, from a $28 mln loss last year. Excluding items, loss was $0.88 per share loss, trailing the Street by $0.46 per share. Net sales fell 13% to $736.7 mln, or $30.8 mln under estimates.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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