Coach Inc.'s (COH) fiscal fourth-quarter earnings rose 3.6% from a year-earlier quarter that included an extra week as North American sales continued to rise.
The luxury handbag, accessories and leather-goods maker has posted double-digit profit growth in recent quarters on the strength of its North American direct-to-consumer businesses and global expansion. The company is also broadening its men's business with more male-oriented products and by opening men's stores in the U.S. and Japan. But Coach had warned that the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan would lower fiscal fourth-quarter sales by about $20 million and earnings by 2 to 3 cents a share.
For the quarter ended July 2, Coach reported a profit of $202.5 million, or 68 cents a share, up from $195.5 million, or 64 cents, a year earlier. The extra week added about 8 cents to last year's per-share earnings. Sales jumped 8.5% to $1.03 billion.
Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had most recently forecast earnings of 65 cents on revenue of $1.01 billion.
Gross margin fell to 71.8% from 73.3%.
Direct-to-consumer sales increased 9%, or 18% on a comparable basis to exclude the extra week last year. Same-store sales, on a comparable basis, rose 10.1% in North America.
Same-store sales fell 2% in Japan, reflecting the stronger yen.
Shares slipped 1% to $64.65 premarket. The stock has risen 70% over the past year.
-By Melodie Warner, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2283; email@example.com