Michael Kors Holdings (KORS) is scheduled to report results of its fourth fiscal quarter before the market open on Wednesday, June 1, with a conference call scheduled for 8:00 am EDT. What to watch for:
1. SIGNS OF STABILIZING PROMOTIONAL ENVIRONMENT: In March, RBC Capital said it believed that recent comp sales trends in the handbag category had reached a positive turning point. In April, Jefferies analyst Randal Konic recommended buying shares of Michael Kors, as data involving Average Unit Retail trends indicated a stabilizing promotional environment and an uptick for the handbag category at the expense of footwear.
2. ANALYSTS CAUTIOUS ON OUTLOOK: Although Michael Kors' third quarter earnings beat expectations, Wedbush said in February that Kors' long-term outlook was "questionable," as worries about overdistribution of the company's products were intact. Ahead of Kors' earnings report, Credit Suisse analyst Christian Buss said he is "increasingly cautious" due to declining watch prices and lagging consumer spend intent, as well as increased handbag discounting.
3. GROWTH 'HICCUP': In its first quarter letter, David Einhorn's Greenlight Capital said that for the third quarter in a row, Michael Kors exceeded expectations, and in this case the bar is rising with consensus FY16 estimates up to $4.40 per share. "Our thesis that KORS is not a fad but rather a good brand that had suffered a growth hiccup is playing out," Greenlight said.
4. MORE POPULAR AMONG TEENS, BUT DECREASED PRESENCE AT NORDSTROM: In a note to investors in April, Piper Jaffray said that a survey by the firm indicated that Michael Kors' handbags are more popular among teenage girls than any other brand. Analyst Erinn Murphy said the company's business has become "more stable" and noted that the market share of the the company's handbags among teens appears to be increasing. Additionally, the analyst said that Michael Kors' products are not losing a significant amount of shelf space at North American retailers. Despite increasing popularity with teens, presence of Michael Kors handbags is decreasing at Nordstrom (JWN) - Get Report , according to a recent note from Wedbush. After speaking with 112 Nordstrom handbag managers in the U.S. and Canada, analyst Lupine Skelly said nearly one-half of Nordstrom stores eliminated Michael Kors handbags during May. Some stores that have stopped carrying Michael Kors bags have replaced them with Coach (COH) and Kate Spade (KATE) merchandise, the analyst said. A Nordstrom spokesperson commented that the company is not ending ties with Michael Kors.
5. WEARABLES: In March, Michael Kors announced that it will enter the wearables market with the introduction of a new wearable technology accessories line this fall, beginning with the "Access" smartwatch which will retail starting at $395.
Reporting by Laurie Pasternack Chan.
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