If any of you are familiar with the card reader Sister Cleo seen shilling on TV, you know from my SSS guess that I won't be threatening her market share anytime soon!
Sky made several good open-ended points on HOTT's near-term uncertainties. There's one that I think is addressed in the Press Release: "The same store sales increase for the corresponding four-week period in fiscal 2000 was 13.0 percent. The October comparable store sales decrease resulted primarily from reduced store traffic and sales during the week leading up to Halloween." My take is that Halloween sales alone were poor enough to drag down the whole month. Last month's announcement had noted positive comps of around 3% in the 2 weeks following 9-11, giving some momentum into October. Given the significant boost Halloween provided these past 2 years, the absence of the incremental sales this year would have created a sales black hole to fill. If I'm right (and that's a big if), October's negative comp disappointment may prove to be an isolated event. Mr. O, I'm not stepping on your optimistic toes too hard, am I? :-)
Lastly, management's stated expectation of low/mid single digit comp sales increases doesn't sound like a low-balling effort after all.
"October's negative comp disappointment may prove to be an isolated event. Mr. O, I'm not stepping on your optimistic toes too hard, am I? :-)"
Nah - no problem. I've been engaged in other activity and only just now am getting caught up with the messages.
Results were under my expectations - really thought we would see a tumble today. What a surprise to learn it was up $2 at some point - sold my trading shares at 27. When 30 options expire later this month, will likely sell them again (Decembers'). Short term, I don't see us hitting much over 30 for a few months.
Mr. (not so) O.
PS: Broker tells me that Wedbush upgraded the stock which may have accounted for some of the bounce today.