(Updated with analyst commentary)

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- J. Crew ( JCG) shares are soaring Thursday morning after the specialty retailer raised its full-year forecast.

The company now expects earnings in the range of 54 cents to 59 cents a share, up from a prior forecast between 30 cents and 33 cents.

J. Crew also announced that it is seeing some positive signs for the fourth quarter, which includes the all-important holiday season. Management foresees a same-store sales increase in the mid-to-high single digits.

Crew Grew!

The preppy retailer has continued to offer newer merchandise (even First Lady Michelle Obama is a fan) even as other retailers play it safe. It is also tightly controlling inventory and hasn't resorted to drastic markdowns, as its competitors have done.

"We believe the company is one of the key winners for the fall season," Eric Beder, analyst at Brean Murray, Carret, wrote in a note. "And it is demonstrating that even in tough times, the consumer will pay a premium for strong fashion items that resonate with their core values."

As a result, Beder upped his price target to $44 from $42.

J.Crew plans to release its quarterly report on Nov. 23.

Shares of the company are soaring by 12% to $42.27 in afternoon trading.

-- Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York

Follow TheStreet.com on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.

Copyright 2009 TheStreet.com Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.

More from Earnings

Flashback Friday: The Market Movers

Flashback Friday: The Market Movers

This Is What's Hot Thursday - Stocks Slide, Intel's CEO Woes & Major Movers

This Is What's Hot Thursday - Stocks Slide, Intel's CEO Woes & Major Movers

The Winners and Losers in Thursday's Market

The Winners and Losers in Thursday's Market

Micron's Upbeat Guidance Is Getting a Thumbs-Up From Investors

Micron's Upbeat Guidance Is Getting a Thumbs-Up From Investors

3 Killer Stocks Trading at Unfair Discounts

3 Killer Stocks Trading at Unfair Discounts