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By
Reuters
Published
May 18, 2011
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Dick's Sporting Q1 sales disappoint, shares fall

By
Reuters
Published
May 18, 2011

May 17 - Dick's Sporting Goods Inc reported quarterly sales that missed analysts' expectations, as heavy rains kept shoppers away in its Northeastern U.S. markets, sending its shares down 5 percent.

Dick's Sporting Goods Inc

The company, which has nearly a third of its stores in Northeastern states like New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania, also projected second-quarter earnings below estimates.

"There are some consumer pressures, with rising gas and food prices.... But I think the guidance is conservative and beatable," Stephens Inc analyst Rick Nelson told Reuters.

Some companies and analysts have said retailers may see lower demand as rising gas, energy and food prices leave U.S. shoppers with less appetite for discretionary spending.

Dick's Sporting, which sells branded merchandise like athletic footwear, gear and apparel under brands such as Nike, Adidas and Under Armour, also faces stiff competition from privately held The Sports Authority, its biggest rival.

However, the largest publicly traded sporting goods retailer in the United States topped Wall Street profit expectations for the ninth straight time helped by higher gross margins.

The Pittsburgh-based company's first-quarter same-store sales, which rose 2.1 percent, missed most analysts' expectations.

"Same-store sales came in well below our estimate... as rain wreaked havoc on sales. We believe sales have recovered but once again commentary on near-term trends will be critical given Dick's Sporting's lofty valuation," JP Morgan's Christopher Horvers wrote in a note.

For the second quarter, the company, which typically runs megastores, with separate shops for golf, footwear, fitness, hunting and team sports, projected a profit of 47-49 cents a share. Analysts were expecting earnings of 50 cents a share.

Shares of the company fell 5 percent to $38.56 in Tuesday morning trade on the New York Stock Exchange.

(Reporting by Mihir Dalal and Viraj Nair in Bangalore; Editing by Don Sebastian)

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