Polar Vortex Hits Pier 1 Imports

NEW YORK (TheStreet) - The polar vortex is hitting home furnishings and decor chain Pier 1 Imports (PIR) in the gut.

Shares were down 7.2% to $18.62 on Friday after the Fort Worth-based company lowered guidance for both sales and earnings for its March 1-ending fourth quarter.

Pier 1 said sales for the final quarter of its fiscal year 2014 would range between $512 million and $514 million, with comparable store sales flat versus last year.

Pier 1 also lowered quarterly earnings guidance to a range of 40 cents to 41 cents compared to its prior guidance of 47 cents to 52 cents a share.

Analysts had expected earnings of 51 cents on revenue of $542 million for the final quarter of the year. Same-store sales are expected to fall -0.13%, according to Thomson Reuters.

Pier 1 will report earnings on April 10.

"Since our holiday sales update on January 9 we have continued to experience significant disruption from adverse weather in many of our major markets," President and CEO Alex Smith said in a statement on Friday. "This has resulted in considerably softer store traffic, as well as some temporary store closings, which further pressured fourth quarter sales and merchandise margin. Our fourth quarter results are frustrating and disappointing. However, we know the weather will eventually end and we can get back to more typical business trends."

Pier 1 joins the growing list of retailers that have had to lower guidance over a rough holiday season, which included severe winter weather. The continued rough weather season has further hampered the home decor store's sales as consumers are reluctant to go out of the house. That said, competitors like TJX's (TJX) HomeGoods are still posting positive comps, despite dealing with that same winter weather problem. TJX said on Wednesday that comparable store sales for its HomeGoods subsidiary rose 4% for the quarter, which ended on Feb. 1.

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