just-styles round-up of Q2 apparel and footwear industry results

just-style's round-up of Q2 apparel and footwear industry results

In the most recent second-quarter filings from US apparel and footwear brands and retailers, The Finish Line profit tumbled, PVH upped its full-year guidance based on strong second-quarter results, while Guess saw its results boosted by solid growth in both Europe and Asia. Oxford Industries, meanwhile, saw mixed results as earnings fell but sales edged up.

The Finish Line

The  full-year outlook at The Finish Line remains unchanged, despite booking lower sales and earnings in its second-quarter. Net profit tumbled to US$2.8m from $22.1m in the year-ago period, while total sales slipped 3.3% to $469.4m from $485.2m last year. Comparable store sales decreased 4.5%, while Finish Line Macy's sales were up 5.6%. "Our second quarter results were shaped by a very promotional marketplace for athletic footwear," said CEO Sam Sato. "With industry headwinds weighing on our sales and margin trends, we remain disciplined in managing our expenses and inventories. While we are planning for a challenging retail environment in the near-term, we are confident that the merchandise, digital, in-store and operational initiatives currently in place will allow us to achieve our current full-year outlook and best position the company to deliver increased shareholder value over the long-term."

Zumiez

Zumiez CEO Rick Brooks said the business outperformed company expectations during the second quarter as net sales increased and net loss narrowed. For the period ended 29 July, net loss was US$0.6m, compared to a net loss of $0.8m in the year-ago quarter. Total net sales meanwhile, increased 7.8% to $192.2m from $178.3m last year. Comparable sales were up 4.7% compared to a comparable sales decrease of 4.9% in the same period last year.

Tailored Brands

CEO of Tailored Brands, Doug Ewert, said disciplined cost management and a more efficient operating structurethe company helped lift profitability, but the business has a cautious outlook for the second half of the year. For the period ended 29 July, net earnings more than doubled to US$58.5m from $25m last year. Total net sales meanwhile, decreased 6.5% to $850.8m, compared to $909.7m in the year-ago period. Retail net sales also fell, slipping 4.5% primarily due to the impact of last year's store closures, with comparable retail segment net sales up 0.1%. As a percent of sales, total gross margin increased 150 basis points to 46.6%, while retail gross margin rate increased 220 basis points to 48.2% – driven by anniversarying last year's clearance activity as the company exited the outlet business. During the quarter, there were costs related to the termination of the company's tuxedo rental license agreement with Macy's and all 170 tuxedo shops at Macy's were closed. In addition, Tailored Bands continues to expect around net 20 store closures in 2017.

Vince Holding

Vince Holding widened its net loss to US$10.1m in the second quarter, from a loss of $2m last year – although this year's figure does not include an income tax benefit whereas last year's figure reflects a $3.3m benefit. Net sales meanwhile, increased 0.2% to $60.8m from $60.7m last year. Comparable sales decreased 0.8%, including e-commerce sales, due to a drop in average order value. CEO Brendan Hoffman noted the company has taken steps to rationalise its department store distribution and to enter into limited distribution arrangements for non-licensed products with two department store partners, Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus, beginning in fiscal 2018, which should help drive improved profitability over the long-term.

Destination Maternity

Destination Maternity widened its net loss in the second quarter, as both net and comparable sales slipped. For the three months ended 29 July, GAAP net loss was US$2.8m, compared to GAAP net loss of $2.5m in the year-ago period. Meanwhile, adjusted net loss narrowed to $1.8m from $2m last year. During the quarter, the company incurred store closing, asset impairment and asset disposal expenses of $1.1m, compared to expenses of $0.4m in the year-ago period. Other charges resulted in income of $0.2m, primarily related to the now terminated merger, compared to charges of $0.9m last year. Gross margin was 53.0%, up 150 basis points over the comparable prior year quarter gross margin of 51.5%. Net sales slipped to $98.3m, compared to $106.5m for the comparable prior year quarter. The company said the decrease was driven by the closure of underperforming stores, a decline in comparable sales, and exit of the Kohl's relationship, which was included in prior year results. Comparable sales meanwhile, decreased 3.4%, compared to a 2.7% decrease for the second quarter of fiscal 2016.

G-III Apparel Group

G-III Apparel has increased its guidance for the full year despite widening its net loss in the second quarter. For the period ended 31 July, the company reported a net loss of US$8.6m, compared to a net loss of $1.3m in the year-ago quarter. G-III Apparel did note however, that the year-ago second quarter net loss did not include any results from the Donna Karan acquisition, but did include about $3m, equal to $0.04 per share, net of taxes, of professional fees related to the acquisition. Net sales meanwhile, increased by 21.6% to $538m, up from $442.3m in the year-ago period. This increase includes about $45m of net sales from the company's DKNY and Donna Karan products.

The company increased its prior guidance for fiscal 2018, noting excellent wholesale net sales across all major brands in the second quarter and a strong order book for the upcoming fall and holiday seasons. It is now forecasting revenues of about $2.8bn and net income between $56m and $60m.

Genesco

Genesco CEO Robert Dennis said the second quarter was "a bit more challenging" than expected as the company moved to a loss in the period. For the three months ended 29 July, net loss totalled US$3.9m, compared to net earnings of $14.6m last year. Net sales were also down, slipping 1.4% to $616.5m from $625.6m in the year-ago period. Consolidated comparable sales, including same store sales and e-commerce and catalogue sales, were flat, with a 1% increase in the Journeys Group, a 2% decrease in the Lids Sports Group, a 3% increase in the Schuh Group, and a 1% decrease in the Johnston & Murphy Group. Comparable sales for the company included a 2% decrease in same store sales and a 30% increase in e-commerce sales.

Lands' End

Lands' End has sounded an upbeat note despite booking a wider loss in its second-quarter and a smaller margin. Losses amounted to US$3.9m from $2m last year, while gross margin narrowed to 44.4% from 46.6% in the year ago period. Net revenues, meanwhile, edged up to $302.2m from $292m. Direct segment sales increased 5.5% to $259.9m, but retail segment sales dropped 7.4%. Same store sales for the quarter increased 3.8%.

Dollar General

Dollar General has released what it says were pleasing results for the second quarter thanks to increased customer traffic and new stores. Net sale were up 8.1% to $5.83bn, while same-store sales grew 2.6%. Gross profit narrowed 47 basis points to 30.7% as a result of higher markdowns, while net income dropped to $295m from $307m due to charges for lease terminations.

Oxford Industries

Oxford Industries booked a mixed second-quarter as sales and margin edged up but earnings fell. Consolidated net sales grew 1% to US$284.7m thanks to year-over-year increases at Tommy Bahama and Southern Tide. This was partially offset by a decrease at Lanier Apparel, while Lilly Pulitzer's sales were essentially flat. Gross margin widened slightly to 58.3% from 58.2%, while earnings dropped 5% to $22.7m. For the full year, the company has revised its GAAP earnings forecast due to the impact of accounting adjustments, to between $3.23 and $3.43. Adjusted EPS is expected between $3.50 and $3.70. Net sales are forecast to grow to between $1.08bn to $1.1bn.

Shoe Carnival

Shoe Carnival CEO Cliff Sifford said the company is pleased with the quarterly improvement in its sales trend, as net revenues rose 1.4% in the second quarter to US$235.1m, compared to $231.9m last year. Comparable store sales increased 0.4%, while net income slipped to $3.9m from $4.1m in the year-ago period. Gross profit margin for the second quarter of fiscal 2017 remained flat at 29%.

Sifford added: "Looking ahead, we believe we are well positioned for back-to-school with a trend-right assortment of branded, family footwear, favourable inventory position, and our multi-channel initiatives which have already generated an August comparable store sales increase of 7%."

Chico's

Chico's CEO Shelley Broader said second-quarter sales were "disappointing" as net revenues fell 9% to US$578.6m from $635.7m in the year-ago period. The company said the decline primarily reflects a comparable sales fall of 8.4%, driven by lower average dollar sale and a decline in transaction count. Net income also slipped, falling to $22.7m from $23m last year. Gross margin declined 180 basis points to 36.1% from 37.9%, primarily reflecting sales deleverage of store occupancy expenses and increased promotional activity to reduce inventory levels.

The company also announced Mary van Praag will join Chico's on 5 September as the new Soma president.

Caleres

Footwear retailer Caleres delivered what CEO Diane Sullivan called "solid sales improvement" across both sides of the business in the second quarter but booked a drop in net earnings. For the 13 weeks ended 29 July, net earnings amounted to US$17.7m, compared to $19.7m in the year-ago period. Gross margin of 42.5% was up 80 basis points, while net sales were up 8.7% to $677m from $622.9m in the prior year. Famous Footwear total sales of $404.9m were up 3.8%, while same-store-sales were up 2.8%. Brand portfolio sales meanwhile, were up 16.8% to $272m, including contribution from Allen Edmonds, which was acquired in December of 2016.

"At Famous Footwear, sales were ahead of expectations, including a stronger start to the key back-to-school selling season and – as a result – we delivered second quarter earnings ahead of expectations," added Sullivan.

Burlington Stores

Top line growth, margin expansion and share repurchase helped pushed earnings up 130% in the second quarter to US$47m. On an adjusted basis earnings increased 82% to $51m. Gross margin expanded by 110 basis points to 40.7% driven primarily by increased merchandise margin. Product sourcing costs also improved 10 basis points. Total sales were up 8.6% to $1.36bn thanks to an increase of $70m from new and non-comparable stores, and a 3.5% increase in comparable store sales.

Perry Ellis

Perry Ellis has moved to a profit in its second-quarter thanks to a strong response to its product innovations and has reaffirmed its full-year outlook. Earnings amounted to US$979m from a loss of $3.56m last year. The disciplined management of inventory along with increased sales of higher margin core brands led to a 40 basis point expansion in GAAP gross margin to 37% from 36.6% in the prior year. Total revenues were up 2.5% to $207m, exceeding guidance. For fiscal year 2018, the company is expecting revenues in a range of $870m to $880m and diluted earnings per share in a range of $2.07 to $2.17.

Destination XL

Increased marketing expenses, higher occupancy costs and a one-off charge all contributed to a net loss for Destination XL of US$3.7m in its second-quarter. This compared to earnings of $0.2m a year earlier. Gross margin, inclusive of occupancy costs, was 46.1%, compared with last year's 46.5%. Our merchandise margin decreased 10 basis points as a result of higher markdowns. Total sales increased 2.8% to $121.1m thanks to a non-comparable store sales increase of 0.1%. 

PVH Corp

PVH has upped its full-year guidance after revealing better than expected second-quarter results thanks to continued momentum and the implementation of operating efficiencies across the business. Earnings reached US$119.7m from $90.5m last year, while revenues were up 7% to $2.1bn, exceeding guidance, thanks to a strong performance in Europe and Asia for its Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger brands. Consequently, the company has raised its full-year earnings outlook thanks to its second-quarter performance, an improvement in foreign currency rates and the strength of its brands. It is projecting earnings per share on a GAAP basis in a range of $6.44 to $6.54. On a non-GAAP basis, earnings are expected to be in a range of $7.60 to $7.70. Revenue is projected to increase around 6% on 2016.

Sears

Sears has announced plans to close a further 28 Kmart stores in addition to the 180 previously announced closings this year as the retailer cited the challenging retail environment, continued softness in store traffic, and elevated price competition for its drop in second-quarter sales. Total revenues dropped to US$4.36bn from $5.66bn a year earlier, while gross margin remained flat at 22.2%. Comparable sales fell 13.2% at Sears, and 9.4% at Kmart, for a company-wide decline of 11.5%. Net losses, however, narrowed to $251m from $395m.

Abercrombie & Fitch

US teen apparel retailer Abercrombie & Fitch has booked a smaller than expected quarterly loss, boosted by robust demand for its Hollister brand. Net losses amounted to US$15.5m, or $0.23 per share, from $13.1m, or $0.19 per share a year earlier. Reuters analysts had expected a loss of around $0.33. The gross profit rate was 160 points lower than last year at 59.1%, while net sales fell slightly to $779.3m from $783.2m, beating analyst expectations of $758.6m. By brand, Hollister sales increased 6% to $446.6m and dropped 8% to $332.7m for Abercrombie. By geography, sales were down 2% to $470.3m in the US, but were up 2% to $309m in international markets over last year.

Guess

Guess has booked second-quarter results boosts by solid growth in both Europe and Asia, and above the retailer's recent financial guidance. GAAP earnings dropped to US$15.2m from $32.3m, but total sales were up 5.3% to $573.7m. In constant currency, net revenue increased by 4.9%. GAAP operating margin improved 120 basis points to 4.1%, thanks to higher initial mark-ups in Europe and overall leveraging of expenses. Sales in Europe and Asia were up 20.1% and 17.5%, respectively, driven by new stores, wholesale growth and positive comps. In the Americas, where Guess is focusing on reducing its footprint and improve earnings, sales were down 11.2%.

Tilly's

Tilly's booked mixed results in its second-quarter but said it believes the combination of its merchandising, marketing and operating initiatives is gaining traction. The company moved to a net loss of US$569,000 from earnings of $1.4m a year earlier. Gross margin, however, improved 100 basis points to reach 29.5% thanks to reduced markdowns and an improvement in buying, distribution and occupancy costs. Total sales edged up 1.8% to $138.8m, while comparable store sales were up 2.1%.

Express

Express said comparable sales and earnings were at the top end of its guidance as its key initiatives gained further traction. For the 13 weeks ended 29 July, the company recorded a net loss of US$11.8m compared to net income of $10.1m in the year-ago period. Gross margin declined by 240 basis points to 27.5% compared to 29.9% last year. Net sales meanwhile, decreased 5% to $478.5m from $504.8m in the second quarter of 2016. Comparable sales (including ecommerce sales) decreased 4%, compared to an 8% decrease last year. Ecommerce sales increased 28% year over year to $90m.

American Eagle Outfitters

American Eagle Outfitters said it has achieved sales and earnings above its expectations in the second quarter, amid a "challenging retail environment". For the period ended 29 July, total net revenue increased 3% to US$845m from $823m in the year-ago quarter, while consolidated comparable sales were up 2%, following a 3% increase last year. Gross margin declined 240 basis points to 34.9% from 37.3% last year, primarily due to increased promotional activity. Net income meanwhile, slipped to $21.2m, compared to $41.6m last year. CEO Jay Schottenstein said he is "optimistic" as the company enters the second half of the year.

DSW

DSW has reported its first positive comp quarter since 2015, with second-quarter net sales increasing 3.3% to US$680.4m and comparable sales up 0.6%, compared to last year's 1.2% decrease. For the three months ended 29 July, reported net income was $28.6m, compared to $25m in the year-ago period. Reported gross profit meanwhile, increased by 50 bps, driven by lower markdowns and favourable sourcing, partially offset by inventory reserves and distribution costs related to the ongoing integration of Ebuys.

Foot Locker

US athleticwear retailer Foot Locker saw its second-quarter earnings and revenue fall in the period ended 29 July. Net income plunged 60% to US$51m or $0.39 per share, down from $127m in the same period of 2016. However, adjusted to exclude a pre-tax litigation charge, earnings were $62 per share. Total sales fell 4.4% to $1.7bn, from $1.78bn last year, with comparable-store sales down 6%. Gross margin rate decreased to 29.6% from 33.0% last year. CEO Richard Johnson blamed a lack of compelling new athletic footwear and apparel styles, and limited availability of innovative new products.

Walmart

Walmart delivered second quarter numbers said by one analyst to show the company is "holding its own in a challenging and competitive retail market." Total revenue reached US$123.4bn in the period, up $2.5bn or 2.1% on last year. Excluding currency effects, total revenue was $124.4bn, an increase of $3.5bn or 2.9%. Walmart US net sales increased 3.3% to $78.7bn, while those at Walmart International slipped 1% to $28.3bn. Net income meanwhile, fell 23.2% to $2.9bn. "Our customers are responding to the improvements in stores and online, and our results reflect this," said CEO Doug McMillon.

L Brands

L Brands booked a fall in both sales and earnings for the second quarter, with net income slipping to US$198.9m from $252.4m last year. For the three months ended 29 July, net sales fell 3.4% to $2.8bn compared to $2.9bn a year ago. Comparable sales were also down, falling 8%. L Brands noted its exit from the swim and apparel categories had a negative impact of 6 percentage points and 9 percentage points to total company and Victoria's Secret comparable sales, respectively. The company lowered its guidance for the rest of the year to reflect a more conservative sales forecast. It now expects 2017 full-year earnings per share of $3.00 to $3.20, down from earlier forecasts of $3.10 to $3.40.

The Buckle

Denim specialist The Buckle booked a drop in both earnings and sales in the quarter, with the former down 25.8% to US$11.5m from $15.5m a year earlier. Revenues fell 7.8% to $195.7m from net sales of $212.2m for the year-ago period, while comparable sales fell 7.7%. Online sales were down 4.5% to $19.5m for the 13-weeks to 29 July.

The Bon-Ton Stores

US department store retailer The Bon-Ton Stores narrowed its net loss to US$33.3m in the second quarter, from $38.7m in the year-ago period. The York, Pennsylvania-based company saw total sales fall 7% to $504.4m, against $542.4m in last year's quarter. Comparable store sales decreased 6.1% year-on-year. Gross margin fell 100 basis points to 35.5% compared to last year, mainly due to an increase in the markdown rate.

Cato Corp

Cato Corp moved to a loss in the second quarter, as negative sales trends continued to put "severe pressure" on merchandise margins and profitability. For its second quarter, net loss was US$0.9m, compared to net income of $15.9m the year before. Lower merchandise margins meant gross margin decreased 590 basis points to 31.1%. Total revenues, meanwhile, slipped to $207m, a drop of 13.4% on last year's $238.9m. Same-store sales were also down, falling 14%. CEO John Cato said it is taking longer than expected for the company to work through its issues, and full year earnings are likely to be "significantly below" the previous year.

Stage Stores

Stage Stores also swung to a net loss of US$6.3m from a net income of $41m in the second quarter last year. On an adjusted basis, second-quarter net loss was $4.1m, versus net income of $0.8m in the prior year. Adjusted second-quarter results exclude after-tax charges related to the Gordmans acquisition and other store closures of about $2.2m. Total sales meanwhile, increased 11.4% to $377.1m, compared to $338.4m last year, while comparable sales slipped 3.6%.

Ross Stores

Ross Stores CEO Barbara Rentler said she was pleased with the "better-than-expected" growth in both sales and earnings in the second quarter. Earnings rose 12% to reach US$317m, up from $282.9m a year earlier. Total sales were up 8% to $3.41bn, while comparable store sales rose 4%. Operating margin of 14.9% exceeded company expectations, mainly due to a combination of higher merchandise margin and leverage on its above-plan sales gains.

Citi Trends

US value fashion retailer Citi Trends saw its net loss widen to US$210m in the second quarter, compared to net loss of $120m a year earlier. However, adjusting for proxy contest-related expenses, the company said net income was $400,000. Total sales during the period increased 7% to $166.2m from $155.3m last year. Comparable store sales were up 4.6% from last year. Acting CEO Bruce Smith said the company was "very pleased" with the results.

Stein Mart

Stein Mart slipped to a net loss of US$13m in the second quarter, compared to net income of $3m in the year-ago period. Total sales fell 2.7% to $311m from $319.8m, while comparable store sales decreased 5%. Ecommerce sales, however, were up 41% over last year's second-quarter. Gross margin narrowed to 20.8% from 28% a year earlier. CEO Hunt Hawkins, said: "Our second-quarter sales trends improved from the first quarter and were strongest in July as we more aggressively priced our clearance merchandise."

Target Corp

US department store retailer Target booked what it called "encouraging" second-quarter results as efforts to turn around its business appear to be paying off. Sales increased 1.6% to US$16.4bn from $16.2bn last year, reflecting a 1.3% comparable sales increase combined with the benefit from sales in non-mature stores. Comparable digital channel sales grew 32% and contributed 1.1%. Net earnings meanwhile, slipped 1.2% to $672m from $680m in the year-ago period. Gross margin narrowed slightly to 30.5%, compared with 30.9% last year, reflecting increased digital fulfilment costs and the retailer's efforts to improve pricing and promotions.

TJX Companies

TJX Companies CEO Ernie Herrman said he was "very pleased" with the company's second quarter results, as net sales for the period increased 6% to US$8.4bn from $7.9bn last year. However, net income slipped to $553m from $562.2m in the prior year period, while gross profit margin was 28.5%, down 0.9 percentage points versus the prior year. For the full year, TJX now expects diluted earnings per share in the range of $3.89 to $3.93 – a 12% to 14% increase over last year's EPS of $3.46.

Dick's Sporting Goods

Retailer Dick's Sporting Goods booked increases in both sales and earnings in the second quarter, with CEO Edward Stack hailing a "significant increase" in the company's bottom line from last year. For the 13 weeks to 29 July, net income reached US$112.4m from $91.4bn in the year-ago period. Net sales were also up, increasing 9.6% to $2.2bn from $2bn last year. Meanwhile, ecommerce sales for the second quarter of 2017 increased by about 19%.

Differential Brands

Differential Brands Group, which owns the Robert Graham and Hudson Clothing brands, widened its net loss in the second quarter. For the three months ended 30 June, net loss was US$4.05m, compared to $3.6m for the prior year period. Net sales meanwhile, were up 13% to $36.5m from $32.4m last year, reflecting a 12% increase in wholesale segment sales and a 15% increase in consumer direct segment sales. The rises were driven by growth at Hudson Jeans and Robert Graham, as well as the addition of the Swims brands, and overall e-commerce sales growth of 38%. Gross margin expanded 590 basis points to 44.5% compared to 38.65% last year.

JC Penney

The challenging retail industry weighed on second-quarter results for JC Penney as it revealed a wider net loss of US$62m from $56m a year earlier. The company was, however, encouraged by an improved performance in its apparel business, including a significant acceleration in kids' apparel. Total sales were up 1.5% to $3bn, while comparable sales dropped 1.3%.

Nordstrom

Nordrstrom booked a marked improvement in sales on the prior quarter, beating previously issued company guidance, as they climbed 3.5% to US$3.7bn from $3.6bn a year earlier. Comparable sales increased 1.7%. Earnings, however, dropped to $110m from $117m, while retail gross profit narrowed 25 basis points to 34.1% as a result of higher occupancy expenses related to new store growth for Nordstrom Rack and Canada in addition to higher loyalty expenses during its anniversary sale. This was partially offset by improved merchandise margins.

Dillard's

Significant markdowns led to a "disappointing loss" for Dillard's in the second quarter. For the 13 weeks ended 29 July, net loss amounted to US$17.1m compared to net income of $12.1m in the year-ago period. Net sales were also down, slipping to $1.43bn from $1.45bn last year. 

Macy's

US department store retailer Macy's said its second-quarter results were in line with its expectations, and that it remains on track to meet its 2017 sales and earnings guidance. Earnings in the period reached US$116m from $11m last year, while gross margin narrowed to 40.3% from 40.9% in the prior year period. Sales meanwhile, slipped 5.4% to $5.6bn from $5.9bn in the same period last year, reflecting, in part, store closures. Comparable sales on an owned basis were down 2.8%.

Destination Maternity

Destination Maternity has booked its third straight quarter of improved comparable sales thanks to a positive impact from its web re-platform and merchandising planning and allocation improvements. Comparable sales fell 3.4%, but marked a sequential improvement in each month of the quarter from negative 5.6% in May to negative 3.3% in June and negative 1.1% in July. The company also noted a positive performance from its recently re-launched e-commerce sites, which delivered a comparable sales improvement of 30.2% for the quarter. For the full year, it expects to report improved adjusted EBITDA before other charges for the quarter versus the second quarter of fiscal 2016 as a result of continued improvement in gross margin as well as reduced expenses. 

The Children's Place

The Children's Place reported what it said were "outstanding" operating results in the quarter with comparable retail sales, gross margin and earnings per diluted share above last year and exceeding the high end of its guidance. Net sales increased 0.6% to US$373.6m on the back of a comparable retail sales increase of 3.1%. Net income reached $14.3m compared to a net loss of $2m the previous year. 

Weyco 

Weyco saw an uptick in both overall sales and net earnings in the second quarter despite what it called a "challenging retail environment". For the three months to 30 June, net earnings attributable to the company grew 26% to US$1.3m from $1m in the year-ago period. Meanwhile, net sales for the quarter were $57.5m, up 1% as compared $56.9 last year. CEO Thomas Florsheim said the sales increase can be attributed, in part, to "successful new product launches" for two of Weyco's major wholesale brands.

Phoenix Footwear Group

Phoenix Footwear Group booked a mixed second-quarter as the company narrowed its net loss but saw net sales decrease. For the three months ended 1 July, net losses amounted to US$519,000, compared to a net loss of $539,000 for the second quarter of fiscal 2016. Gross margins as a percentage of net sales remained flat at 36.8%. Net sales meanwhile, slipped $784,000, or 18.5% to $3.5m, compared to $4.2m in the year-ago period. Phoenix said the majority of the decrease in net sales was associated with internet-based customers, of which $354,000 was associated with the loss of two large customers. The balance of the decline in net sales was associated with the independent and catalogue channels of distribution.

Wolverine Worldwide

Wolverine Worldwide second-quarter revenue and earnings surpassed expectations, despite a drop in net income. For the 13 weeks ended 1 July, net earnings slipped to US$20.5m, compared to $24.1m in the year-ago period. Meanwhile, reported revenue was up 2.6% to $598.8m.  Underlying revenue increased 1.4%, while reported gross margin narrowed to 37.9%, compared to 38.8% in the prior year.

Steve Madden

US footwear and accessories specialist Steve Madden said its "strong momentum" continued into the second quarter, as the company "delivered another quarter of robust sales and earnings growth" despite the challenging retail environment. For the three months ended 30 June, net income increased to US$29m from $24.7m in the year-ago period. Net sales were also up, rising 15% to $374.1m, compared to $325.4m last year. Gross margin for the quarter was 37.3%, compared to 37.2%. CEO Edward Rosenfeld said the business saw an "outstanding" performance in its core Steve Madden women's wholesale footwear division. 

Under Armour

A combination of weaker demand in fitness related categories and lower selling prices hit Under Armour in the second quarter as the company narrowed its net loss but launched a restructuring plan that will involve closing facilities and cutting around 2% of its workforce. Net losses amounted to US$12.3m from a loss of $52.6m a year ago, while gross margin declined 190 basis points to 45.8%. Revenues climbed 9% to $1.1bn. The company also cut its full-year outlook and now expects adjusted earnings of $0.37-$0.40 and revenues to grow 9-11%.

"As we stand up our category management structure within a consumer-led approach, we intend to meaningfully increase our go-to-market speed and amplify our digital capabilities," said CEO Kevin Plank. "We've identified a number of areas to enhance our operational capabilities, drive process improvement and gain greater efficiencies. We remain steadfast in driving and building our brand while shifting our operational focus to become more return-on-investment and cost of capital centric - institutionalising discipline to deliver more consistent, long-term shareholder value."

Columbia Sportswear

Columbia Sportswear revealed record second-quarter net sales of US$398.9m, a 3% increase compared with net sales of $388.8m last year. However, net loss widened to $11.5m during the period, compared to $8.2m in the year-ago quarter. For the year ahead, the company expects net sales growth of around 3%, and net income of between $193m and $200m. CEO Tim Boyle said: "We delivered solid first half financial results featuring growth from three of our four brands and all four geographic regions. First-half sales growth of 3% and earnings growth of 4% are on pace with our full-year expectations."

Carter's

Carter's achieved "good growth" in sales and earnings during the second quarter,  driven by retail and international businesses, and the contribution from the Skip Hop brand which was acquired earlier this year. For the period ended 1 July, net sales increased 8.2% to US$692.1m, principally driven by growth in the company's US retail segment. Net income was also up, rising 4.8% to  $37.9m. Given the strength of Carter's fall and holiday product offerings, CEO Michael Casey said the business forecasts "good growth" in the second half and expects to achieve its growth objectives this year.?

Rocky Brands

Rocky Brands moved to a profit in its second-quarter thanks to enhancements made to the company's production facility in Puerto Rico, along with a number of organisational changes aimed at reducing its expense structure. Earnings amounted to US$1.5m from a loss of $1.8m a year earlier. Net sales, however, dropped to $58.5m from $62.6m, while retail sales increased 5.8% to $11m from $10.4m last year. Gross margin improved to 31.1% of sales, from 26%, driven by a significant improvement in both wholesale segment and military segment margins.

Levi Strauss & Co

Jeans giant Levi Strauss & Co saw net sales increase in the second quarter, up 6% to US$1.07bn from $1.01bn in the year-ago period. In the three months ended 28 May, net income meanwhile, slipped 43% to $18m from $31m last year. The decline was primarily due to a $23m loss on early extinguishment of debt, related to debt refinancing activities in the quarter, which will result in a substantial reduction in the average cost of debt and interest expense, the San Francisco-based company said. Gross margin widened to 52.3% from 51.1%. In Europe, net revenues were up 17%, while in the Americas and Asia sales grew by 2%. Based on the company's performance in the first half, revenue growth guidance for the full year has been raised to 2%-4% in constant currency.

Skechers

Skechers topped sales forecasts for the second quarter but saw earnings slip 19.7% to US$59.5m, partly due to a higher effective tax rate but also a result of investment in the firm's international business. Sales, however, exceeded company expectations, reaching a record $1.03bn, increasing 16.9%. This was thanks to a 6.4% increase in the company's domestic wholesale business, an 18.6% increase in its international wholesale business, and a 28% jump in its company-owned global retail business, which included comparable same store sales increases of 7.1%. Gross margin edged up slightly to 47.6% from 47.4% last year.