Best Buy's Stock Drops After Sales Miss, Disappointing Outlook

By Tomi KilgoreMarketWatch Pulse

Best Buy Co. Inc.'s stock dropped 7.5% in premarket trade Thursday, after the electronics retailer missed third-quarter sales expectations and provided a downbeat outlook, offsetting a profit beat. For the quarter ended Oct. 31, earnings rose to $125 million, or 36 cents a share, from $107 million, or 30 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. Excluding non-recurring items, adjusted earnings per share came to 41 cents, above the FactSet consensus of 35 cents. Revenue fell to $8.82 billion from $9.03 billion, just shy of the FactSet consensus of $8.83 billion, while domestic same-store sales growth of 0.5% was well below expectations of a 1.5% increase. Online comparable sales increased 18%, while industry sales in the NPD-tracked categories dropped 4.3%. Chief Financial Officer Sharon McCollam said the decline in the NPD-reported categories "got progressively worse throughout the quarter, which adds a level of caution to our outlook." She said she now expects a fiscal fourth-quarter revenue to decline in the low-single digit percentage range. The stock has dropped 20% year to date through Wednesday, while the S&P 500 has gained 1.2%.

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