When J.C. Penney Co. Inc. (JCP) shared its fiscal second-quarter financial results before the markets opened on Friday, the report was absolutely catastrophic. Shares plummeted to a low not seen since before 1980, at least in early trading indications.
The struggling retailer said that it had a net loss of $0.09 per share and $2.96 billion in revenue. That compared with consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters that called for a net loss of $0.05 per share and $2.84 billion in revenue. In the same period of last year, a net loss of $0.05 per share and revenue of $2.92 billion were reported.
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Comparable sales declined 1.3% for the most recent quarter, resulting in a positive two-year stack of 0.9%.
In terms of guidance for the 2017 full year, EPS are expected to be between $0.40 and $0.65, and comparable sales are expected to be in the range of −1% to 1%. The consensus estimates are $0.49 in EPS and $12.2 billion in revenue for the year.
On the books, J.C. Penney cash and cash equivalents totaled $314 million at the end of the second quarter.
Marvin R. Ellison, Chairman and CEO, commented:
We are pleased to deliver a top line sales increase of 1.5 % and quarterly sequential improvement of 220 basis points in our comp sales performance in go forward stores. While broader retail remains challenged, we are encouraged by the improved performance in our total apparel business, including a significant acceleration in kids' apparel. Nearly all categories delivered improved sales results during the quarter, with our growth initiatives in beauty, home refresh and omnichannel continuing to deliver positive sales growth.
Shares of J.C. Penney closed Thursday down nearly 9% at $4.71, with a consensus analyst price target of $ and a 52-week range of $4.17 to $11.30. Following the release, the stock was down about 23% at $3.63 in early trading indications Friday.