Not Much Glitter in Tiffany Revenues or Forecast

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Tiffany & Co. (NYSE: TIF) reported fourth-quarter and full-year 2014 results before markets opened Friday. For the quarter, the luxury goods company reported adjusted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $1.51 on revenues of $1.29 billion. In the same period a year ago, Tiffany reported EPS of $1.47 revenue of $1.3 billion. Fourth-quarter results also compare to the Thomson Reuters consensus estimates for EPS of $1.51 and $1.31 million in revenue.

For the full year, the company posted adjusted EPS of $4.20 on revenues of $4.25 billion, compared with EPS of $3.73 in 2013 on revenues of $4.03 last year. Analysts were looking for EPS of $4.17 on revenues of $4.29 billion.

Foreign exchange effects snipped 3% from quarterly net sales and 7% from full-year sales. On a constant currency basis, same-store sales rose 4% for the year. Full-year net and same-store sales both rose 6%. U.S. fourth-quarter net and same-store sales in 2014 were both flat compared with the prior year. On a GAAP basis, total sales declined 1% in the fourth quarter and rose 6% for the full year.

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Tiffany’s Asia/Pacific region saw a constant-currency rise of 7% in net sales and a boost of 3% in same-store sales. On a GAAP basis, total sales rose 4% in the fourth quarter and 9% for the full year. Sales growth in China, Australia and Singapore overcame softness in Hong Kong.

Japanese stores posted a fourth-quarter net sales increase of 1% and same-store sales drop of 5%. Full-year net sales rose 4% and same-store sales rose 1%. On a GAAP basis, total sales fell 13% in the quarter and 4% for the full year.

On a constant currency basis, European net sales rose 9% in the quarter and same-store sales rose 4%. For the year, net sales rose 6% and same-store sales fell 1%. On a GAAP basis, quarterly sales were flat and full-year sales rose 6%.

Tiffany’s full-year EPS guidance likely will disappoint investors and analysts. The company said adjusted EPS growth would be “minimal” in 2015. Tiffany expects first-quarter net earnings to fall by 30%, followed by a “more modest” decline in the second quarter, after which the company expects “double-digit percentage net earnings increases in the third and fourth quarters.”

The consensus first quarter analysts’ estimate for EPS is $0.92, a drop of 5% compared with a year ago. Based on last year’s first quarter EPS of $0.97, Tiffany expects first-quarter EPS of around $0.68.

For the full year, the consensus EPS estimate is $4.45. Revenue is forecast at $4.42 billion, slightly below the 2014 total.

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These earnings are not what investors were looking for. Still less were they expecting the weak guidance. The CEO had nothing to say about how the company plans to promote new growth, but he may be saving that for the conference call.

Shares traded down about 2.7%% in premarket trading Friday morning, at $84.00 in a 52-week range of $82.75 to $110.60. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $103.80 before the results were announced.