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Why Shares of Hibbett Sports Dropped Today

By Timothy Green - May 25, 2018 at 12:13PM

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Lower taxes and share buybacks propped up earnings, but the retailer still fell short of expectations.

What happened

Shares of Hibbett Sports (HIBB 5.46%) slumped on Friday after the retailer reported lackluster first-quarter results. Hibbett missed analyst expectations across the board, with strong e-commerce sales unable to offset a decline in comparable-store sales. The stock was down about 13.8% at 11:25 a.m. EDT.

So what

Hibbett reported first-quarter revenue of $274.7 million, down 0.4% year over year and $2.65 million below the average analyst estimate. The decline was driven by a 0.3% drop in comparable-store sales and store closings. Hibbett pointed to strong growth in e-commerce sales, which now account for 7% of total sales, as one silver lining in the quarter.

A slumping chart.

Image source: Getty Images.

Earnings per share came in at $1.12, up from $0.97 in the prior-year period but $0.03 lower than analysts were expecting. A lower tax rate and share buybacks were the only reasons for the earnings growth. Gross margin slumped by 0.4 percentage points year over year, while store operating, selling, and administrative costs as a percentage of revenue jumped by 1.3 percentage points. Operating income tumbled 16.2%.

Hibbett CEO Jeff Rosenthal sounded optimistic about the second quarter: "As we start the second quarter, we believe we are well positioned with fresh assortments and easier comparisons as we prepare for the back-to-school season."

Now what

Hibbett maintained its full-year earnings guidance, which calls for earnings per share between $1.65 and $1.95. Despite the decline in margins during the first quarter, the numbers were still solid overall. Gross margin was 35.2%, while operating margin was 10.4%.

Hibbett has $115.8 million of cash and no debt on its balance sheet, putting it in a strong financial position. While investors didn't like the company's results, Hibbett has plenty of time to turn things around.

Timothy Green has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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