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Analyst raises some of Skechers earnings estimates

NEW YORK (AP) -- Skechers USA Inc.'s stock climbed in Monday afternoon trading as an analyst raised some of the footwear company's earnings estimates, saying its well-received product assortment is helping market share gains.

THE SPARK: Susquehanna Financial Group's Christopher Svezia boosted Skechers first-quarter earnings forecast to 20 cents per share from 18 cents per share and increased his third-quarter estimate to 52 cents per share from 51 cents per share. For the full year, the analyst now predicts earnings of $1.04 per share, up from $1.02 per share.

Svezia maintained a "Positive" rating and $25 price target.

THE ANALYSIS: Svezia said in a client note that Skechers has continued to outperform in the women's, fitness, men's and children's categories at retail locations despite bad weather.

The analyst also said that recent market share gains could be sustainable for the rest of the year even though some back-to-school shipments may take place in the third quarter instead of the second quarter. Svezia said that retailers in general are placing conservative orders this year across almost all footwear brands. The analyst said he views this as a timing issue and not brand-specific.

Skechers, based in Manhattan Beach, Calif., did not immediately respond to an email request for a comment.

SHARE ACTION: Shares of Skechers rose 99 cents, or 4.8 percent, to $21.57 in afternoon trading. The stock has traded in a 52-week range of $12.50 to $22.61. For the year to date, the shares are up 11.3 percent.