Urban Outfitters Profit Falls But Tops Expectations

Urban Outfitters  said its earnings fell in the holiday quarter, marking the retailer's second consecutive decline in annual profit.

Still, results were better than projected, sending shares up 5.7% to $29.75 in late trading.

For the period ended Jan. 31, Urban Outfitters reported a profit of $72.9 million, or 61 cents a share, compared with $80.3 million, or 60 cents a share, a year earlier. The current year's results are based on a 16% decline in outstanding shares, helping the company preserve the per-share payout.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters had projected 56 cents a share.

Gross profit margin--or the percentage of sales the retailer makes after accounting for production costs--was 34.5%, down slightly from 34.6%.

Sales, which the company had already reported last month, were largely flat from the year-ago period at $1.01 billion.

The Philadelphia-based retailer, which opened its first store in 1970 near the University of Pennsylvania campus, has expanded into a multinational clothing company with more than $3 billion in sales a year under the Urban Outfitters, Free People, Anthropologie, BHLDN and Terrain brands.

The retailer has reported a sales slowdown at its two largest brands, Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie Group, which also includes BHLDN and Terrain.

Write to Maria Armental at maria.armental@wsj.com