Kohl’s stock gains as earnings and sales beat estimates and retailer sees ‘acceleration of traffic’


Dina Rudick | The Boston Globe | Getty Images

Kohl’s shares rose Tuesday morning as the retailer reported quarterly earnings and net sales that beat analysts’ expectations.

CEO Michelle Gass said the chain saw an “acceleration of traffic,” and new customers in stores and online, with Kohl’s launching a slew of new brands ahead of and during the holiday season.

Kohl’s is calling for same-store sales to be down 1% to up 1% in fiscal 2020.

Its shares jumped over 7% in premarket trading following the release.

Here’s how Kohl’s did during its fiscal fourth quarter compared with what analysts were expecting, based on data pulled from Refinitiv:

  • Earnings per share: $1.99, adjusted, vs. $1.88 expected
  • Net sales: $6.54 billion vs. $6.52 billion expected
  • Same-store sales: flat vs. a drop of 0.1% expected

Net income during Kohl’s fourth quarter ended Feb. 1 fell to $265 million, or $1.72 a share, from $272 million, or $1.67 per share, a year ago

Excluding one-time items, Kohl’s earned $1.99 per share, better than the $1.88 a share expected by analysts polled by Refinitiv.

Net sales were essentially flat at $6.54 billion year over year, but better than the $6.52 billion that analysts were expecting. Total revenue was $6.83 billion, up from $6.82 billion a year ago.

Same-store sales were flat, better than the 0.1% drop expected by analysts.

Looking to the current fiscal year, Kohl’s is now calling for earnings per share to fall between $4.20 and $4.60. Analysts had been forecasting $4.59 a share, according to data from Refinitiv.

Kohl’s had already reported disappointing holiday sales figures, prompting the retailer to lower its full-year profit outlook. It said same-store sales, which track the purchases online and at stores open for at least a year, declined 0.2% during November and December. Its women’s business in particular was a weak spot during the holiday season, Gass had said.

The underwhelming results have led analysts to doubt Kohl’s tie-up with Amazon, where it accepts Amazon-related returns at all of its stores, can boost sales. But Gass said earlier this year that it “is working.”

So far, department store rivals J.C. Penney and Macy’s have reported drops in sales during the fourth quarter, along with same-store sales declines. Nordstrom is set to report after the bell on Tuesday.

Kohl’s shares have fallen more than 43% over the past 12 months. The company has a market cap of about $6.1 billion.

Kohl’s is expected to hold a meeting with investors in New York later this month, on March 16.

Read the full earnings press release here.

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