US: Estee Lauder Disappoints With Q4 Results

Estee Lauder has reported weaker-than-expected results for its fiscal fourth quarter, and offered a weak forecast for the year ahead.

For its year-ending quarter, net profit was down 39% to $93.5m, hurt by the lack of one-off gains, while sales grew by 5.2% to $2.65bn.

Sales in the Americas, its biggest market, rose by just 1.4% to $1.1bn – the slowest such growth in four quarters. The group said it was affected by lower tourist spending in the US (due to the strong dollar) as well as lower customer traffic at key retailers such as Macy’s and Target.  It was also hurt by weak sales in some Asia-Pacific countries.

The company said it expects the uncertainty following the Brexit referendum, plus terrorist attacks in Europe and the Middle East to affect results in the rest of the year.  It now expects full-year adjusted earnings of $3.38 to $3.44 per share, below the average analyst estimate of $3.53 per share, with sales forecast to grow by 6%-7%.