Best Buy Co. on Tuesday reported a third-quarter loss on slumping sales and restructuring charges. Here outgoing CFO Jim Muehlbauer discusses expected sales trends in the fourth quarter.
Question: "You mentioned that you don't expect the operating income rate to decline at the same pace in the fourth quarter as it did in the third quarter? Can you talk about that more specifically from a sales perspective?"
Response (CFO Muehlbauer): "Looking at the fourth quarter in comparison to what we've seen so far this year, if you recall, all year long we've been talking about product launches that we expect to be back-end loaded toward the holidays. And certainly, as the performance that we've seen and others in the marketplace have seen in advance of the computing launches and phone launches so far this year, (that) has had an impact on dampening sales. So now that we have those products in our stores, we expect certainly more momentum behind those things. So, that is one of the key attributes that we've been looking at all year from a sales-trend performance."