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Why Michael Kors Holdings Limited Stock Skyrocketed 42% in February

By Steve Symington - Mar 11, 2016 at 5:36PM

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The luxury apparel company capped a difficult year with a strong quarter. Here's how.

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What: Shares of Michael Kors (CPRI 0.54%) jumped 42% in the month of February, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence, driven by the company's strong fiscal third-quarter 2016 results.

So what: The pop followed an otherwise difficult year for the luxury fashion and apparel market; shares of Michael Kors dropped 46.7% when all was said and done in calendar 2015 as the company began to show signs of decelerating growth and contracting margins.

But Michael Kors' latest quarter was markedly better than analysts were expecting. Quarterly revenue climbed a modest 6.3% (9.9% at constant currency) year over year, to $1.4 billion, as both revenue and comparable store sales came in well above the company's expectations. Meanwhile, net income declined 3%, to $294.6 million. But thanks in part to Michael Kors' aggressive share repurchases over the past year, net income per share actually increased 7.4% to $1.59. By comparison, analysts' consensus estimates called for significantly lower revenue of $1.36 billion, and earnings of $1.36 per share.

Now what: But perhaps most encouraging from a brand perspective is that CEO John Idol credited their relative strength in the crucial holiday period to consumers' positive response to Michael Kors' luxury fashion product offerings, as well as strength in its digital flagship business and outsized growth overseas. And looking forward to the current quarter, Michael Kors anticipates constant-currency revenue to continue to increase in the high-single digit range, while comparable store sales should continue to improve to be flat from last year's fiscal fourth quarter. At this point, with shares currently trading at just 13.4 times trailing 12 months earnings -- and as long as Michael Kors can continue making progress -- I think the stock could be poised to also continue rewarding patient, long-term shareholders.

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