Ulta Beauty Shares Fall After Company Quarterly Earnings

Shares of Ulta Beauty Inc. fell 3.6% late Thursday after the beauty products retailer reported quarterly earnings and sales above expectations but predicted slightly lower-than-expected sales in the fiscal first quarter and planned on more store openings this year. Ulta said it earned $140.2 million in the fourth quarter, or $2.24 a share, compared with $107.8 million, or $1.69 a share, in the year-ago period. Sales rose to $1.58 billion, from $1.27 billion a year ago. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected earnings of $2.14 a share on sales of $1.54 billion. Comparable-store sales rose 17% in the quarter, Ulta said. For the first quarter of fiscal 2017, the company said it expects net sales in the range of $1.24 billion to $1.27 billion. The analysts surveyed by FactSet expect sales around $1.28 billion. Ulta's board of directors also authorized a $25 million share buyback program. Ulta shares ended the regular session down 0.6%.

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