Tiffany Holiday-period Sales Fall Below Expectations, Provides Downbeat Profit Outlook

By Tomi Kilgore Markets MarketWatch Pulse

Tiffany & Co. reported Tuesday holiday-period total sales of $966 million, up from $961 million a year ago, although total same-store sales fell 2%. By region, same-store sales fell 4% in the Americas, declined 4% in the Asia-Pacific region and dropped 11% in Europe, but rose 21% in Japan. "These overall holiday period sales results were somewhat lower than we had anticipated, but we continue to benefit from a favorable gross margin and prudent expense management," said Chief Executive Frederic Cumenal. He said he did not anticipate any significant improvement in 2017 to the challenges faced last year. The high-end jewelry retailer expects fiscal 2016 adjusted earnings per share to be down "no more than a mid-single digit percentage," while the FactSet consensus of $3.97 is up 6.7% from a year ago. Separately, Tiffany said it appointed Reed Krakoff to the newly created position of chief artistic officer, effective Feb. 1. The stock, which was still inactive in premarket trade, has gained 14% over the past three months, while the SPDR S&P Retail ETF has gained 3.1% and the S&P 500 has advanced 7%.

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