Five Below Shares Rally On Company's Earnings Beat, New-store Openings

By Claudia Assis Markets MarketWatch Pulse

Shares of Five Below Inc. rose nearly 7% late Wednesday after the discount retailer reported per-share earnings above expectations and called for more store openings. Five Below said it earned $49.8 million, or 90 cents a share, in the fourth quarter, compared with $42 million in the year-ago period. Net sales rose to $388.1 million, from $326.4 million a year ago, the company said. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected per-share earnings of 89 cents a share on sales of $388 million. The company said it plans to open about 100 new stores in 2017, including locations in California. Net sales for the first quarter are expected to be between $228 million and $232 million, assuming a 2% increase in comparable-store sales. Per-share earnings were seen between 12 cents and 14 cents in the first quarter, the company said. The stock ended the regular trading session down 1.9%.

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