Why Shoe Carnival Shares Popped

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of Shoe Carnival (NASDAQ: SCVL  ) were partying on Friday, gaining as much as 10% after reporting a strong first quarter.

So what: The shoe-selling chain turned in a per-share profit of $0.47, $0.07 ahead of the analyst consensus, while revenue crept up 4.3% thanks to an 8% increase in store count over the year. Same-store sales, however, decreased 0.8%, perhaps indicating organic weakness in the retailer. CEO Cliff Sifford noted "the colder, wetter weather" made the quarter "challenging," as many other retailers have said this season. Better weather in April improved the sales trajectory and helped the company beat expectations. Its outlook for the current quarter was in line with estimates with an EPS of $0.26-$0.30 and same-stores increasing 3-5%.

Now what: With another 33 new stores planned in fiscal 2013, Shoe Carnival continues to expand at ambitious pace, helping to offset any continued struggling with same-store sales. Considering that expansion plan and the positive sales trajectory in April, shares could easily continue to move higher from here.

Want more on Shoe Carnival? Add the company to your Watchlist here.

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