Why Shares of Children's Place Retail Stores, Inc. Fell

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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 Children's Place Retail Stores,  (NASDAQ: PLCE  ) were slipping today, falling as much as 13% after a disappointing fourth-quarter earnings report.

So what: The children's clothing retailer actually beat earnings per share estimates by $0.01, posting a profit of $0.96, though revenue dipped 8.2%, to $467.5 million, worse than estimates of $484.6 million. Comparable sales fell 4.3%, and guidance was weak, as well. For the current quarter, Children's Place sees an EPS of $0.56-$0.66, and expects EPS of $2.85-$3.05 for the full year, which assumes comparable sales of flat to -1%. Analysts had been expecting $0.94 and $3.66, respectively.

Now what: CEO Jane Effers cited "an intensely promotional environment" and poor weather for the disappointing sales. She also said the company would double its international store count to 65-70, and grow other segments of the business, including e-commerce and wholesale. Management said its guidance was cautious due to the recent severe weather and expected negative foreign currency translation effects. Still, negative comparable sales is never a good sign, especially as it comes after the company said it would close 125 underperforming stores. If Children's Place misses its lowered guidance for Q1 that may be a strong sign for investors to sell.

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Jeremy Bowman

Fool since 2011. I write about consumer goods, the big picture, and whatever else piques my interest. Follow me on Twitter to see my latest articles, and for commentary on hot topics in retail and the broad market.

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Related Tickers

8/28/2015 4:00 PM
PLCE $59.63 Up +0.17 +0.29%
Children's Place R… CAPS Rating: **