ANF Sees Sales Go South

Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE:ANF) said Thursday its sales tanked 34% during the first quarter because of store closings during the coronavirus pandemic and people purchasing less apparel as they holed up at home.

During the first fiscal quarter, net sales dropped to $485.4 million from $734 million a year earlier. Sales at its namesake Abercrombie brand were down 30% while Hollister sales were down 36%. The company did not break out same-store sales during the quarter.

Its net loss for the period ended May 2 widened to $244.1 million, or $3.90 per share, from $19.2 million, or 29 cents a share, a year earlier. Excluding one-time charges, the company lost $3.29 per share.

The retailer is not offering a second-quarter or full-year outlook at this time.
Analysts had been calling for Abercrombie to report an adjusted net loss of $1.39 per share on revenue of $497.3 million, based on Refinitiv estimates.

However, it is difficult to compare reported earnings to analyst estimates for Abercrombie’s first quarter, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to hit global economies with earnings impacts that are difficult to assess.

CEO Fran Horowitz said that as of Thursday, roughly half of Abercrombie’s global store base is back open for business.

She said first-quarter digital sales globally were up about 25% year over year, and that they have accelerated further into May.

As of Wednesday’s market close, Abercrombie shares were down about 24.5% this year. The company has a market cap of $803.8 million.

Shares dropped 68 cents, or 5.2%, to $12.37.