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Good day, everyone, and welcome to the Tiffany & Co. Second Quarter Conference Call. Today's conference is being recorded. Participating on today's call is Mr. Patrick McGuiness, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, and Mr. Mark Aaron, Vice President of Investor Relations. At this time, it is my pleasure to turn the conference over to Mark Aaron. Please go ahead.
Mark L. Aaron
Thank you. Good day, everyone, and thanks for joining us. On today's call, Pat and I will review second quarter results and comment on the full year financial outlook. Before continuing, please note Tiffany's Safe Harbor provision that statements made on this call that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. Actual results might differ materially from the expectations projected in those forward-looking statements. Additional information concerning risk factors that could cause actual results to differ materially is set forth in Tiffany's Form 10-K, 10-Q and 8-K reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.
Now let's review the results. When we reported first quarter results on May 24, we indicated that worldwide sales in the first few weeks of the second quarter were increasing by a low-single-digit percentage and that we expected net earnings in the second quarter to decline from the prior year when excluding last year's nonrecurring costs. The overall results we report today were in line with those internal expectations. Net worldwide sales rose 2%, led by strong growth in Japan, while sales in the Americas, Asia Pacific and Europe were virtually equal to the prior year. And while net earnings on a GAAP basis rose 2%, adjusted net earnings declined 17% from the prior year, which was about what we expected when excluding nonrecurring costs in last year's second quarter related to the relocation of our New York headquarters staff. The year-over-year comparisons we faced in the quarter could not have been much more difficult, so it's worth reminding you that in last year's second quarter, worldwide sales had increased 30%, net earnings had increased 33% and net earnings excluding nonrecurring costs had surged 58%.