a) Worldwide net sales increasing by a mid-single-digit percentage in U.S. dollars (a high-single-digit percentage increase on a constant-exchange-rate basis).
b) Adding a net of 14 Company-operated stores (opening six in the Americas, seven in Asia-Pacific and three in Europe, and closing one each in Asia-Pacific and Japan).
c) Operating earnings increasing at a higher rate than sales growth, due to improvements in both the gross margin and the SG&A expense ratio.
d) Interest and other expenses, net of $58 million.e) The effective income tax rate in a range of 34% - 35%. f) Net inventories increasing 5%; capital expenditures of $225 million (versus $220 million in 2012); and free cash flow (cash flow from operating activities less capital expenditures) of $300 million (versus $109 million in 2012). Today’s Conference Call: The Company will conduct a conference call today at 8:30 a.m. (Eastern Time) to review actual results and the outlook. Please click on http://investor.tiffany.com (“Events and Presentations”). Next Scheduled Announcement: The Company expects to report its November-December holiday sales results on Friday January 10, 2014. To receive notifications of future announcements, please register at http://investor.tiffany.com (“E-Mail Alerts”). Tiffany & Co. operates jewelry stores and manufactures products through its subsidiary corporations. Its principal subsidiary is Tiffany and Company. The Company operates TIFFANY & CO. retail stores in the Americas, Asia-Pacific, Japan, Europe and the United Arab Emirates, and also engages in direct selling through Internet, catalog and business gift operations. For more information, visit www.tiffany.com or call the shareholder information line at 800-TIF-0110. This document contains certain “forward-looking” statements concerning the Company’s objectives and expectations with respect to sales, products, store openings and closings, operating margin, interest and other expenses, the effective income tax rate, net earnings, inventories, growth opportunities, capital expenditures and free cash flow. Actual results might differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Information concerning risk factors that could cause actual results to differ materially is set forth in the Company’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.