Best Buy Blasts Q3 Earnings Forecast, Holds Back on Guidance

Best Buy said its same-store sales rose 23% from last year, amid a 172% surge in digital transactions that fueled much stronger-than-expected third quarter earnings.

Best Buy Co. Inc.  (BBY) - Get Report posted stronger-than-expected third quarter earnings Tuesday, but again declined to provide near-term profit guidance amid the ongoing coronavirus uncertainty. 

Best Buy said non-GAAP earnings for the three months ending in October came in at $2.06 per share, up 82.3% from the same period last year and well ahead of the Street consensus forecast of $1.70 per share. Group revenues, Best Buy said, rose 21% to $11.85 billion, again topping analysts' forecasts of an $11 billion tally.

Same store sales rose 22.6% from last year, Best Buy said, while online sales surged 174% as customers stocked up on appliances and electronics, including the new Apple Inc.  (AAPL) - Get Report iPhone, amid reduced store openings for smaller rivals amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“Today, we are once again reporting strong quarterly results in the midst of unprecedented times,” said CEO Corie Barry. “Our comparable sales grew a remarkable 23% as we leveraged our unique capabilities, including our supply chain expertise, flexible store operating model and ability to shift quickly to digital, to meet what is clearly elevated demand for products that help customers work, learn, cook, entertain and connect in their homes."

"The current environment has underscored our purpose to enrich lives through technology, and the capabilities we are flexing and strengthening now will benefit us going forward as we execute our strategy,” Barry added  

Best Buy shares were marked 5.8% lower in early trading afternoon following the earnings release to change hands at $115.00 each, a move that trims the stock's six-month gain to around 45%.

“While the demand for the products and services we sell remains at elevated levels as we start the fourth quarter, it is very difficult for us to predict how sustainable these trends will be due to the significant uncertainty related to the various impacts of the pandemic," said CFO Matt Bilunas. "Thus, similar to the last two quarters, we are not providing financial guidance today.”