New York & Company adjusts Q4 expectations following soft holiday season

New York & Company on Wednesday announced its holiday sales performance results and fourth quarter 2016 outlook. The apparel chain reported a comparable store sales decrease of 1.7%, and now expects its fourth quarter comparable store sales to be down in the low single-digit percentage range.


Actress Eva Mendes in the Eva Mendes Collection for New York & Company

 
CEO Gregory Scott said he was disappointed in the results, but was pleased by certain aspects of the business that performed well despite the “challenging retail landscape" such as sweaters, outerwear, winter wear, lounge, dresses and the Eva Mendes Collection. The better performing categories were offset by weak performances from woven and knit tops, denim and jewelry, a key holiday selling period category.
 
Scott added, “We also saw additional positives in the quarter including; the expansion of our credit loyalty program to all-time highs, the continued growth in our eCommerce business, and the ongoing success of our celebrity collaborations; however, traffic declines and soft sales during the quarter have caused us to increase markdowns, which have negatively impacted our fourth quarter results but ensures that we start the spring season clean.”
 
In addition to updating its comparable store sales outlook, New York & Company expects its fourth quarter operating results to reflect a loss of $2.5 million to $4.5 million, and it expects its inventory to be approximately flat.
 
New York & Company entered the fourth quarter with slow sales and a positive performance from its e-commerce business. The retailer was also encouraged by its strong Black Friday weekend performace.
 
In December, the retailer posted its third quarter results that just missed its expectations. Scott claimed that the “difficult mall traffic environment” led to the retailer’s poor sales results, but its operating results met its guidance.
 
The retailer initially expected its fourth quarter comparable sales to be flat or down slightly on a percentage basis, and in December, it expected its net sales to decline in the low single-digit percentage range.



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