Lululemon Athletica Inc. - Improvement Shown But More Needed

Shares of Lululemon Athletica edged upward as much as 3% in regular trading today after shooting upward on Thursday on the company's earnings beat

Lululemon Athletica inc. ( LULU) reported earnings results that beat Wall Street‘s estimates, and analysts at Janney Capital Markets say the company’s management should be commended. However, they’re remaining on the sidelines until more data points which show that stabilization is really occurring come in.

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Lululemon’s results

On Thursday, Luluelemon Athletica posted second quarter earnings of 33 cents per share, compared to Wall Street’s estimate of 29 cents. Management had provided guidance of between 28 cents and 30 cents per share. The company also beat in sales, as comparable sales were flat, compared to the Retail Metrics consensus of a decline of 2.9%.

In their report dated Sept. 11, 2014, Janney analysts Adrienne Tennant and Gabriella Carbone said Lululemon was able to beat estimates because of strong performance in its fall transitional products. Company management pulled forward some of its products from the third quarter to driver stronger July sales.

Lululemon Athletica management execute

The analysts believe that Luluelemon’s management should be commended because they delivered better results at the top line and also “a much cleaner inventory position.” The company had $177 million at the end of the second quarter, which was about an 8% increase year over year and lower than the 13% increase in total sales.

The Janney team notes that Lululemon came very close to positively inflecting in its IM spread, which they define as “the difference between the change in total sales and the change in average total inventory measured in basis points.” They believe the company will post a positive inflection in the third quarter.

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