Abercrombie soars to a 7-month high after delivering strong earnings; plans to close up to 40 stores this year

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Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Shares of Abercrombie & Fitch surged to a seven-month high after the company delivered quarterly profits that topped Wall Street’s expectations, acting as a bright spot amid a string of mixed retail earnings.

Along with its fourth-quarter earnings that impressed analysts and robust full-year sales guidance, the company recorded its sixth-straight quarter of positive same-store sales.

The Ohio-based retailer plans to shutter up to 40 stores this year, largely in the US. It closed 29 stores last year.

Here’s what Abercrombie reported for the fourth-quarter, compared with what Wall Street surveyed by Bloomberg were expecting.

  • Adjusted earnings per share (EPS): $1.35 versus $1.14.
  • Net sales: $1.16 billion versus $1.13 billion.

The retailer said it expects net sales growth for fiscal 2019 to come in between 2% and 4%, driven in part by positive same-store sales.

Last year was seen as a turnaround period for Abercrombie, which has undergone changes under chief executive Fran Horowitz, who joined in 2017. The company has focused on changing up the perception of its brand with new marketing.

Abercrombie & Fitch also owns the Hollister and Abercrombie Kids brands. While Abercrombie’s quarterly comparable sales fell 2% at the end of last year – a larger-than-expected decline – Hollister’s rose 6%, topping estimates nearly two-fold.

Even with revitalization efforts the company has made in recent quarters, Abercrombie’s share price hasn’t been able to make a sustained turnaround. Shares are still 20% below their 52-week high from August, and 72% below their record high of $85.77 set in mid-2007.

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Abercrombie shares.

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Abercrombie shares.
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Markets Insider