Aeropostale (ARO) Stock Sinking Following Quarterly Loss, Weak Outlook

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Aeropostale (ARO) were sinking, sharply down 15.83% to $2.18 in early market trading Friday, following the release of the struggling teen apparel retailer's first quarter financial results after the closing bell yesterday.

"First quarter sales fell 20%, on 19% less square footage amid store closures, and a sharp 11% drop in comp sales, as ARO cited off-brand merchandise, colder weather and West Coast port shutdown," said S&P Capital IQ senior equity analyst Tuna Amobi in a note this morning.

The firm cut its price target to $2.50 from $3, while maintaining a "hold" rating.

Aeropostale posted a loss of $45.3 million, or a loss of 56 cents per share in its fiscal first quarter, a wider than expected loss compared to the loss of 55 cents per share analysts polled by Thomson Reuters were expecting.

Revenue of $318.6 million also fell short of the consensus estimate of $325 million for the period, according to analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.

In the same quarter of last year, Aeropostale posted a loss of 52 cents per share on revenue of $395.9 million.

The teen retailer reported comparable sales, including the e-commerce channel, fell by 11% in the quarter.

Looking ahead, Aeropostale forecasts second quarter 2015 loss of between 60 cents to 52 cents per share, worse compared to the consensus estimate for a loss of 37 cents per share.

Shares closed at $2.59 in Thursday's regular session.

New York City-based Aeropostale is a mall retailer of casual apparel and accessories for teenagers and younger kids.

The company operates 949 Aeropostale stores in the U.S. and Canada.

Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates AEROPOSTALE INC as a Sell with a ratings score of D-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate AEROPOSTALE INC (ARO) a SELL. This is driven by a few notable weaknesses, which we believe should have a greater impact than any strengths, and could make it more difficult for investors to achieve positive results compared to most of the stocks we cover. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its generally high debt management risk, disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow, generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself and poor profit margins."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: ARO Ratings Report

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