What happened

Shares of specialty women's apparel retailer J.Jill (NYSE:JILL) fell as much as 17.6% on Tuesday after the company reported fiscal second-quarter results. At the time of this writing, shares were down 6.4%, according to Nasdaq data. 

The stock's decline is likely due to the company's weak outlook for its fiscal third quarter.

A chalkboard sketch showing a stock price moving lower

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

J.Jill reported fiscal second-quarter net sales of $179.7 million, down from $181.4 million in the year-ago quarter. On average, analysts expected revenue of $178.8 million. J.Jill's non-GAAP earnings per share were $0.24, down from $0.29 in the year-ago quarter. The consensus analyst forecast was for non-GAAP EPS of $0.23.

Comparable sales for the quarter did increase 2.2% year over year. But J.Jill's guidance for third-quarter net sales and comps growth were below consensus analyst estimates.

Now what

Management said it expects third-quarter net sales to increase 2% to 4%. On average, analysts were expecting net sales during the period to climb 4.7% year over year. J.Jill also notably forecast comps to decline 2% to 4% in Q3. This compares with a consensus analyst estimate for comps to rise 4% year over year. 

CEO Linda Heasley sounded optimistic. "We are convinced that we have a great opportunity to be more to the women we serve and are positioned to attract more women to the brand going forward," Heasley said in the company's second-quarter earnings release.