4 Retailers Hit 52-Week Highs: DKS, MW, EXPR, AZO

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Shares of these retail stocks hit 52-week highs on Wednesday: Dick's Sporting Goods ( DKS), Men's Wearhouse ( MW), AutoZone ( AZO) and Express ( EXPR).

Dick's Sporting Goods

The athletic goods retailer posted fourth-quarter earnings on Tuesday of $111.1 million, or 88 cents a share, up from year-ago earnings of $87.5 million, or 71 cents. Analysts were expecting earnings of 88 cents a share.

Shares of Dick's Sporting Goods hit a 52-week high Wednesday of $47.70. The stock's 52-week low of $29.10 was set on Aug. 9.

Dick's Sporting Goods has an estimated price-to-earnings ratio for next year of 16.99 times; the average for specialty retailers is 16.88. For comparison, Big 5 Sporting Goods ( BGFV) has a lower forward P/E of 9.54; Hibbett Sports' ( HIBB) forward P/E is 20.81.

Sixteen of the 24 analysts who cover Dick's Sporting Goods rated it buy; eight analysts gave the stock a hold rating.

TheStreet Ratings' gives Dick's Sporting Goods a B+ grade with a buy rating and a $54.03 price target. The stock has risen 28.17% year to date.

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Men's Wearhouse

The retailer is scheduled to report fourth-quarter earnings on Wednesday. Analysts, on average, anticipate a loss of 13 cents a share revenue of $563.17 million.

"With minimal exposure to weather impacts combined with favorable replenishment demand as well as a new fashion cycle within modernized suiting, we believe our Q4 numbers remain intact," Wedbush analysts wrote in a Feb. 29 report. "In addition to difficult +DD same-store sales comparisons in F12, we also highlight management has previously indicated the desire to become more visible with marketing and promotional efforts at all retail brands which may pressure margins and delay the highly anticipated return to +DD operating margins. Thus, while we are impressed with MW's ability to maintain steady sales momentum and gradual margin improvement in a volatile macro environment (note our/consensus forecasts already reflects +13% earnings growth following +57% in F11), we prefer to be more constructive on a pull-back."

Shares of Men's Wearhouse hit a 52-week high Wednesday of $40.23. The stock's 52-week low of $24.50 was set on Oct. 4.

Men's Wearhouse has a forward P/E of 15.16; the average for apparel retailers is 17.03. For comparison, both Jos. A Bank Clothiers ( JOSB) and Casual Male Retail Group ( CMRG) have lower forward P/Es of 13.18 and 10.44, respectively.

Seven of the nine analysts who cover Men's Wearhouse rated it buy; two analysts gave the stock a hold rating.

TheStreet Ratings gives Men's Wearhouse a B+ grade with a buy rating and $45.85 a price target. The stock has risen 23.14% year to date.


AutoZone

"While secular tailwinds remain solid and AZO is effectively growing its commercial business rapidly, we expect trends to decelerate as AZO and the industry cycle difficult multi-year comparisons," JPMorgan analysts wrote in a March 2 report. "Combined with less opportunity for gross margin expansion and structurally higher expenses per store due to commercial investments, this should slow the fundamentally and buyback driven upward earnings revision cycle. Broadly, we view auto parts retail as a show me story as the aftermarket tailwinds begin to decelerate in 2012 after peaking in 2010/2011. These concerns, combined with a premium valuation, are likely to cap out the stock, in our view."

Shares of AutoZone hit a 52-week high of $385.99 on Wednesday. The stock's 52-week low of $256.86 was set on March 15.

AutoZone has a forward P/E of 14.15; the average for specialty retailers is 15.93. For comparison, AutoNation ( AN) has a lower forward P/E of 13.64; O'Reilly Automotive's ( ORLY) forward P/E is 17.54.

Thirteen of the 25 analysts who cover AutoZone rated it hold; 12 analysts gave the stock a buy rating.

TheStreet Ratings gives AutoZone a B- grade with a buy rating and $496.70 price target. The stock has risen 18.2% year to date.

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Express

The retailer reported Wednesday fourth-quarter earnings of $60.4 million, or 68 cents a share, up from year-ago earnings of $48.4 million, or 55 cents.

"We are encouraged by management's plans to expand internationally and are especially pleased to see that full-year EPS guidance leaves room for upside to consensus despite significant expenses in FY13 related to such longer-term investments," Piper Jaffray analysts wrote in a report Wednesday.

Shares of Express hit a 52-week high Wednesday of $25.43. The stock's 52-week low of $16.12 was set on Aug. 19.

Express has a forward P/E of 11.98; the average for apparel retailers is 16.86. For comparison, Abercrombie & Fitch ( ANF) has a lower forward P/E of 10.59; Urban Outfitters' ( URBN) is 18.15.

Twelve of the 14 analysts who cover the company rated it buy; two analysts gave the stock a hold rating.

TheStreet Ratings gives Express a C grade and a hold rating. The stock has risen 26.73% year to date.

-- Written by Alexandra Zendrian

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