Whole Foods Shares Tank After Earnings

Business Insider

Whole Foods earnings are out, and the stock is tumbling.

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The company posted earnings of $0.78 per share, a penny above consensus expectations.

Revenues came in at $3.86 billion, right in line with estimates.

However, same-store sales growth in Q4 came in at 7.2 percent, below consensus estimates of 7.7 percent gains.

The company narrowed its guidance for 2013 same-store sales growth to a range of 6.6-8 percent from 6.5-8.5 percent previously.

The company also slightly lowered revenue guidance, saying it now expects 10-11 percent revenue growth in 2013 after previously guiding for 10-12 percent growth.

The stock is down almost 8 percent in after-hours trading.

Below are details on the company's 2013 outlook from its press release:

The following table provides information on the Company's updated outlook for fiscal year 2013, a 52-week year, as compared to fiscal year 2012, a 53-week year. Based on its year-to-date results, the Company is narrowing its comparable and identical store sales growth ranges for the fiscal year, keeping the midpoints approximately in line with its prior outlook, while maintaining EPS of $2.83 to $2.87. On a 52-week to 52-week basis, the Company continues to expect sales growth of 12% to 14% and diluted earnings per share growth of 14% to 16%.

As reflected in its outlook, the Company does not expect to produce the same level of EPS growth over the remainder of the year as it produced in the first quarter due primarily to tougher gross margin comparisons, particularly in the second and third quarters of last year, along with its ongoing strategy to expand value offerings across the store to improve its competitive price positioning. As such, the Company does not expect an improvement in gross margin this year, and given first quarter results, this implies lower year-over-year gross margin for the remainder of the year.

In addition, the Company expects a significant year-over-over increase in pre-opening and relocation expense in the fourth quarter based on the opening of 10 to 12 new stores along with a high number of openings in the first quarter of 2014.

Click here for the full release >

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