fashion brand Michael Kors (KORS 49.55, -7.90, -13.8%) cracked
fresh 52-week lows today in reaction to the company’s underwhelming third
quarter and full year comparable sales expectations.
In short, management’s expectation for full year reported comparable store sales down in the low single digits, primarily driven by an unfavorable currency impact, and guidance for third quarter comparable store sales on a reported basis declining in the low single digits weren’t up to snuff. Management’s full year guidance is a cut from prior expectations for flat comparable store sales.
Despite the lowered comp outlook for the year Michael Kors modestly upped its profit guidance as the company is now looking for FY2019 earnings per share (EPS) in the range of $4.95-5.05, up from the prior $4.90-5.00 expectation, owing to the better than expected Q2 operating performance. The total revenue outlook remained unchanged at approximately $5.125 bln on slightly higher guidance for operating margin to of about 18.2% vs 18.0% prior.
For Q3 then, Michael Kors sees worth than expected total revenue of approximately $1.46 bln, including approximately $165 mln of incremental revenue from Jimmy Choo. The company expects Q3 retail revenue for Michael Kors to grow in the low single digits. As mentioned, Michael Kors expects comparable store sales on a reported basis to decline in the low single digits, primarily due to an unfavorable foreign currency impact.Wholesale revenue is expected to decrease in the high single digits, and licensing revenue to decline in the mid-teens. Operating margin is expected to be approximately 20.8%. Michael Kors also outlined worse than expected guidance for Q3 EPS in the range of $1.52-1.57, which includes approximately $0.04 to $0.06 of accretion from Jimmy Choo.
Swinging back to the current quarter’s report then, Michael Kors announced better than expected Q2 EPS of $1.27 on revenue growth of 9.3% to $1.25 bln on adjusted gross margin growth of 80 basis points to 61.0%. Inventory for the Michael Kors brand at September 29, 2018 was $619.7 mln, an 11% decrease as compared to the prior year. Management stated that inventory levels were a bit lean in the quarter and anticipates getting into a better inventory position toward the end of Q3.
Q2 Michael Kors Retail revenue was approximately flat at $643.9 mln on comparable store sales which fell 2.1%. On a constant currency basis, comparable store sales decreased 1.3%. Michael Kors Wholesale revenue declined 1.3% to $457.8 mln compared to the prior year. Michael Kors Licensing revenue decreased 6.8% to $35.4 mln compared to the prior year.
Results in Europe were weak in the quarter. Specifically in Europe, Michael Kors' sales declined double digits for the quarter in line with the company's plans to decrease inventory and drive higher full-price sell-through. Europe retail comp store sales declined in the mid-single digits, which was better than expected. Wholesale revenues in Europe declined double digits in the quarter. To put itself in a better position on Europe Michael Kors is inching closer to closing its deal to buy Versace, which the company announced on September 25, and is now slated for a Q4 close.
After opening 14.9% lower shares of KORS sank to down 17.4% at their worst levels, though now modestly pare those losses. Still, the stock made a fresh 52-week low during the session and has extended its YTD decline to about 21.5% with today's move lower. Technically KORS is forming a death cross today, when the shorter term moving average crosses below the longer term, a chart pattern the stock hasn't seen since October of 2016.
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