Tiffany Falls, Zale Jumps on Holiday Sales

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Tiffany (TIF) shares were losing ground on Friday, even after the upscale jewelry retailer said that comparable sales for the holiday period rose 6% and reaffirmed its year-end outlook.

Shares were losing 2% to $90.16.

Tiffany's global sales in the two-month period ended Dec. 31 rose 4% to $1.03 billion, though on a constant-currency basis net sales rose 8%, the New York-based company said. Tiffany's comparable-store sales rose 6% in the same period.

"Tiffany enjoyed a good holiday season with overall sales results in line with our expectation, and we were pleased to see growth across our fine and statement, engagement and fashion jewelry categories," Chairman and CEO Michael Kowalski said in a statement. "Based on these sales results and related margins, we expect that full year earnings before certain charges will meet the most recent forecast we provided in November."

In November, Tiffany had boosted its adjusted earnings guidance for the fiscal year to a range of $3.65 to $3.75 a share. Including charges, the company expects GAAP EPS to range between $1.27 and $1.37 for the January-ending quarter.

Tiffany said that comps in the Americas region, its largest distribution of its 286 stores, rose 7%, while total sales on a constant-currency basis rose 7% to $550 million.

Its next largest region, the Asia-Pacific region, saw total sales rise 8% on a constant-currency basis to $196 million, while comp sales were flat from the prior year. Tiffany said that higher sales in China were offset by declines in other parts of the region.

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