I really don't like celebrating the loss of anyone's job, but enough was enough at jewelry retailer Zale
And why not? Zale has been losing market share left and right -- to mass retailers Wal-Mart
Fourth-quarter results were nothing to get excited about. Sales were just 2.3% (2.8% if you exclude the impact of store closures), and after-adjustment net income was down slightly from the year-ago period. That's not the sort of thing you want to hear about the company's biggest quarter of the year.
So where do we go from here? Putting the head of Zales Canada in charge of all of Zales stores for North America is a good first step. It should also be noted that while Zales and Piercing Pagoda did poorly this quarter, the other concepts such as Gordon's, People's, and Bailey Banks & Biddle all posted mid-single-digit same-store sales growth. Unlike, say, Pier 1
Here's additionally relevant food for thought. People like to buy bling, and Zales still has some level of brand recognition among customers. The company remains profitable, and after being so poorly run for so long, it probably has a fair bit of untapped and/or squandered potential lurking within.
I'm not buying shares today, or even when my Foolish trading restrictions lift in 10 days. But I'm going to start looking more closely at this stock and the overall market sector. Blue Nile seems more enticing today, but as we've seen with Tiffany
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Fool contributor Stephen Simpson has no financial interest in any stocks mentioned (that means he's neither long nor short the shares).