Sneaker giant Nike, Inc. (NYSE: NKE) reported weaker-than-expected earnings for the fourth quarter, hurt mainly by higher expenses and tax rate. Revenues, meanwhile, increased and came in slightly above the forecast. The company’s stock fell 2% in the after-hours trading session on Thursday.
Net income was $989 million or $0.62 per share in the fourth quarter, lower than $1.14 billion or $0.69 per share reported a year earlier. The bottom-line was negatively impacted by an increase in selling & administrative expense and a higher tax rate, which were partially offset by an 80 basis points increase in gross margin aided by higher selling prices. Earnings also missed the estimates.
The bottom-line was negatively impacted by an increase in selling & administrative expense and a higher tax rate
Revenues, meanwhile, rose 4% annually to $10.2 billion in the May quarter, supported by a 10% growth in Nike brand to $9.7 billion. Revenues of the Converse segment were $491 million, broadly unchanged from last year.
The top-line benefitted from the management’s strategic investments in the digital platform and innovation that pushed up consumer demand, led by NIKE Direct. Revenues also came in slightly above Wall Street’s forecast.
Mark Parker, CEO of Nike, said, “FY19 was a pivotal year for NIKE as we continue to bring our Consumer Direct Offense to life throughout the marketplace. Our distinctive innovation and digital advantage led to accelerated growth across our complete portfolio, while our Brand fueled deeper relationships with consumers around the globe.”
During the fourth quarter, the company repurchased 10.6 million shares for about $897 million. In the whole of 2019, it bought back 54.3 million shares for nearly $4.3 billion.
Nike shares closed Thursday’s regular trading higher but lost sharply after the earnings report. The stock, which has moved up 13% so far this year, hit an all-time high in April. In the past twelve months, it gained 5%.
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