La-Z-Boy's fiscal 4th-quarter profit dips on costs

La-Z-Boy reports stronger revenue but weaker profit for fiscal 4th quarter

Associated Press

MONROE, Mich. (AP) -- La-Z-Boy Inc.'s fiscal fourth-quarter net income fell as higher expenses outweighed improved revenue for the furniture maker.

The Monroe, Mich., company reported after the market closed Tuesday that it earned $18.3 million, or 33 cents per share, for the quarter that ended April 27. That is compared with $19.6 million, or 37 cents per share, in the same quarter last year.

Its revenue increased to $359.5 million from $327.4 million.

La-Z-Boy said that revenue from its retail stores open at least a year increased 11.2 percent. This is considered a key indicator of a retailer's financial performance.

Company President and CEO Kurt Darrow said that management is pleased with the results for the quarter and the year, saying they demonstrate a successful strategy. La-Z-Boy said that during the year its retail business proved profitable, it strengthened its balance sheet and also reinstated its dividend.

The company earned $46.4 million, or 85 cents per share, for the full year. That is down from $88 million, or $1.64 per share, last year. Its revenue increased to $1.33 billion from $1.23 billion.

Darrow said the company is confident in its retail model and said that the strength of its brand positions the company well to benefit from recovering economy and improving housing market.

However, he noted that the furniture industry typically experiences weaker demand during the summer months.

As a result, La-Z-Boy plants shut down for one week of vacation and maintenance during the first quarter, which ends in July. The company did not issue a formal forecast but said that its first quarter is usually its weakest in terms of sales and earnings due to the seasonal slump.

La-Z-Boy sells its products directly to customers or through its chain of 313 owned and leased La-Z-Boy Furniture Galleries stores.

Shares of the company increased more than 6 percent to close at $20.28 and slipped 3 cents in after-hours trading following its report.

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