Abercrombie & Fitch Rises After Retailer Affirms Guidance

Abercrombie & Fitch expects comparable-store sales and net sales to be in a range of flat to up 2% for the quarter ending in February.
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Shares of Abercrombie & Fitch  (ANF) - Get Report rose Monday after the retailer reaffirmed its guidance for its fiscal fourth quarter ending in February.

The metrics it reiterated include:

  • Net sales in a range of flat to up 2%, reflecting an adverse impact from currency fluctuations to the tune of about $5 million.
  • Comparable-store sales in a range of flat to up 2%, compared to an increase of 3% in the prior fourth quarter.
  • A decrease of about 150 basis points in the gross profit rate from 59.1% in the year-earlier period. Seventy basis points of that decline stemmed from currency fluctuations and anticipated China tariffs.
  • Adjusted operating expenses in a range of flat to up 2% from $555 million in the prior fourth quarter.

Abercrombie & Fitch said it had a stellar start to the holiday shopping period.

“We experienced record revenues in the U.S. over Black Friday week, which includes the Tuesday before Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday,” CEO Fran Horowitz said in a statement.

Abercrombie’s Hollister brand set a new record “and momentum at Abercrombie continued to build, delivering its strongest top-line in over five years,” she said. The company expects Abercrombie’s comparable sales to outperform Hollister’s in the fourth quarter and expects the U.S. to outperform international.

Meanwhile, Abercrombie Chief Financial Officer Scott Lipesky told the ICR Conference in Orlando, Florida, that the company wasn't afraid to exit even the top shopping centers as it works to reduce its physical presence.

“We’re willing to walk away from any mall at this point,” he said, according to Bloomberg. “For us, it’s about getting the right store in the right location at the right size.”

Abercrombie shares rose 4.05% to $17.98 in trading Monday.