Kohl’s Gains on Earnings Beat

Kohl’s (NYSE:KSS) on Tuesday reported fourth-quarter earnings and sales that topped analysts’ estimates, and pointed to stronger growth in 2021.

Kohl’s reported net income of $343 million, or $2.20 per share, compared with $265 million, or $1.72 a share, a year earlier. Excluding one-time charges, the company earned $2.22 per share, topping the $1.01 forecast by analysts.

Sales fell to $5.88 billion from $6.54 billion a year earlier, topping the $5.86 billion forecast by analysts.

Online sales jumped 22% from a year earlier and accounted for 42% of its total sales.

The company expects sales to rise by a mid-teens percentage this year. Analysts, on average, expected sales growth of 17.5%, or $17.64 billion, this year. It forecast adjusted earnings to be in a range of $2.45 to $2.95 per share for 2021, largely in line with expectations of $2.67 a share.

Facing pressure from activist investors, the company said it will reinstate its dividend and buy back shares.

With its sales strained by the pandemic, Kohl’s has been working to drive more shoppers online, and add brands that sell home accessories, fitness gear and makeup to lure new customers. It’s also been trying to cut costs and trim inventories, and these efforts have helped improve profits.

Tuesday, Kohl’s said it would spend between $200 million to $300 million on share repurchases this year. It said it plans to invest at least $550 million in capital expenditures, with some of that money going toward the debut of hundreds of mini Sephora shops in its stores, and opening its sixth U.S. e-commerce fulfillment center.

KSS vaulted 57 cents, or 1%, to $57.57.