13439 Thu, 01/03/2008 - 6:54pm
UNION, N.J.–Bed Bath & Beyond recorded an earnings decline in the recently completed third quarter and does not expect to meet Wall Street expectations for the fourth quarter due to projected flat sales.
The specialty home retailer recorded net earnings of $138.2 million, or 52 cents per diluted share, for the third quarter ended Dec. 1, compared with $142.4 million, or 50 cents per diluted share, for the year-ago period. Net earnings for the quarter included an $8 million benefit due to “the favorable resolution of discrete tax items required to be recorded in the quarter,” the company stated.
Bed Bath’s net sales for the quarter increased 10.8 percent to about $1.80 billion from roughly $1.62 billion for the same period last year. Same-store sales inched up 0.8 percent, compared with a 4.6 percent gain in last year’s third quarter.
Bed Bath for the fourth quarter ending March 1 expects earnings per diluted share of 64 cents to 67 cents, due in part to projected flat same-store sales for the quarter. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial had expected earnings for the fourth quarter of 78 cents per share on average, according to media reports. The retailer for the full year expects earnings per share to be between $2.08 and $2.11 per share, compared with reported analyst expectations of about $2.20 per share.
The retailer’s stock fell nearly 3.4 percent to close at $27.40 today following the news.
A spokesman for Bed Bath & Beyond did not return calls by press time.