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Urban Outfitters (URBN) Posts Stellar Results This Holiday

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Urban Outfitters, Inc. URBN reported impressive results for the holiday period. URBN provided a two-year comparison for fiscal 2022 results as the pre-pandemic period reflects a more precise comparison base due to persistent store closures through most of fiscal 2020, induced by the coronavirus pandemic.

Management also shared views on fourth-quarter fiscal 2022 gross margin outlook. It said that increased inbound transportation costs could deleverage gross margin.

Let’s delve deeper.

Sales Data

Total net sales for the two months ended Dec 31, 2021, jumped 14.6% from the level recorded in the two months ended Dec 31, 2019.  Comparable Retail segment net sales also grew 14% on account of a solid double-digit sales increase in digital channel, somewhat offset by high single-digit negative retail store sales on lower store traffic.

By brand, comparable Retail segment net sales rose 47% at Free People, 15% at the Anthropologie Group and 3% at Urban Outfitters. While total Retail segment net sales jumped 15%, the Wholesale segment net sales declined 18% on lower Free People Group’s sales to promotional wholesale customers.

During the 11 months ended Dec 31, 2021, total net sales rose 14.4% from the level recorded in the eleven months ended Dec 31, 2019. Also, comparable Retail segment net sales increased 16% on sturdy digital sales, partly offsetting negative retail store sales, stemming from weak store traffic. Wholesale segment net sales tumbled 22% in the eleven-month period.

What’s More?

Urban Outfitters is constantly strengthening its direct-to-consumer business, enhancing productivity across the existing channels, expanding product assortments and optimizing inventory level. Its strategic growth initiative FP Movement and store-growth endeavors are yielding results.

Regarding its store-related endeavors, URBN inaugurated 56 retail stores in the eleven months ended Dec 31, 2021. These include 29 Free People Group stores consisting of 18 FP Movement outlets, 17 Urban Outfitters stores, 9 Anthropologie Group stores and 1 Menus & Venues restaurant.

During the eleven-month period, one Urban Outfitters franchisee-owned store and one Anthropologie Group franchisee-owned store were introduced. In the aforementioned period, management shuttered 10 retail locations, comprising 4 Anthropologie Group stores, 2 Free People Group stores, 2 Urban Outfitters stores and 2 Menus & Venues restaurants.

This currently Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock has rallied 10.5% in the past year against the industry’s 5.6% decline. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

3 More Retailers’ Holiday Performance

Zumiez ZUMZ delivered sales and comparable sales growth during the holiday period despite the ongoing supply-chain headwinds. ZUMZ’s net sales grew 9% during the nine weeks ended Jan 1, 2022 from the level noticed in the nine-week period ended Jan 2, 2021.

Zumiez’s comparable sales jumped 6% for the holiday period. In the aforementioned period, ZUMZ’s Men’s category registered largest comparable sales growth followed by Footwear, Accessories and Women’s.

Five Below FIVE posted sturdy holiday sales results. FIVE efficiently managed the product flow and remained proactive in meeting consumer demand.

Five Below’s net sales for the holiday period, spanning from Oct 31, 2021 through Jan 1, 2022, climbed 20.6% to $870.9 million from $722.3 million reported in the comparable nine-week period from Nov 1, 2020 through Jan 2, 2021. FIVE’s comparable sales for the holiday shopping season rose 7.7%.

General merchandising retailer Big Lots BIG performed well during the holiday period. BIG’s two-year comps for fiscal November and December grew 9% during the holiday period.

However, Big Lots has been witnessing soft of traffic and sales trends since early January. Given the continuation of the existing trends with bad weather conditions, BIG anticipates registering a two-year comps rise in flat-to-low-single-digit percentage for fiscal January.


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