reported a 15% increase in second-quarter earnings, meeting analysts' estimates, but the clothing designer provided investors with a mixed outlook.
The company posted earnings of $45 million, or 41 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with $39 million, or 36 cents a share, the previous year. Analysts had expected a profit of 41 cents, according to Thomson First Call.
Revenue climbed 22% to $959 million from $789.5 million a year earlier.
"As has been the case for some time, the retail and macroeconomic environments remain challenging," said Chairman and Chief Executive Paul R. Charron in a written statement. "Apparel spending has been adversely impacted by a number of external factors, including the unemployment rate and consumer confidence."
Charron also said second-quarter results were driven primarily by the acquisitions, which added about $67 million to total sales. The retailer also gained $35 million in revenue from the weaker dollar.
For the third quarter, Liz Claiborne predicted earnings of 85 cents to 88 cents a share, at the lower end of analysts' average estimates of 88 cents a share.
But for the full year, the company expects sales to grow 11% to 13%, stronger than initial estimates of 9% to 11%. Claiborne nonetheless kept its profit projections at $2.49 to $2.55 a share for 2003. Wall Street is expecting yearly earnings of $2.54 a share.