Stifel Notes Rough Qtr. for Express (EXPR) Leading to Cut Outlook; Affirms at 'Buy'
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Stifel affirms Express (NYSE: EXPR) at Buy with a price target of $18 following Q2 results and trimmed outlook issued earlier Wednesday.
Analyst Richard Jaffe commented today:
- 3Q Assortments Improve But is it Enough to Drive Traffic and Sales? Management believes that the fall assortment is more cohesive across wearing occasions, with important trends clearly identified. Our channel checks supports management’s more optimistic opinion regarding the fall floorset. However, the issue for 3Q will be driving traffic following two quarters of disappointing the customer. In response to this concern, management is aggressively pursuing several marketing initiatives to drive customer acquisition and retention. We expect to get more clarity regarding these initiatives and management’s thoughts on 3Q merchandise assortments on this morning’s conference call.
- Below Consensus Guidance – Given 1H’s weakness, management has taken a cautious outlook for the remainder of the year. Management established its 3Q EPS guidance of $0.09-$0.15, which assumes a high single to low double digit comp decrease. Consensus is at $0.32. Our estimate of $0.34 is under review. Management lowered its yearly EPS guidance to $1.00-$1.14 from $1.41-$1.54 and assumes a high single digit comp decrease. Consensus is at $1.46 and our estimate is $1.52 and is under review.
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