Next Lifts Profit Forecast AgainOctober 28, 2020
Next Plc raised its annual earnings forecast for the third time as its recovery from a nationwide lockdown continues.
The clothing retailer, a linchpin of many British shopping areas, now expects a pretax profit of 365 million pounds ($476 million) for the year. The midpoint of the company’s previous forecast was 300 million pounds.
- Next’s performance has been steadily improving as online sales continue to rise and the stores recover from a three-month mandatory shutdown in the spring at the height of the pandemic.
- The retailer’s current outlook is very different from April, when its worst-case scenario was a loss of 150 million pounds and its midpoint was no profit at all.
- Next said the tightening of restrictions on social interaction in many parts of the U.K. hasn’t affected business. Third-quarter sales were up 2.8% from the same time last year. It now expects full-year sales to be down 17%, compared with an earlier estimate for a drop of 20%.
- Chief Executive Officer Simon Wolfson said uncertainty still remained, and the “biggest single unknown” is whether England, Northern Ireland and Scotland will follow the Welsh government and shut non-essential retail shops again to help curb the pandemic.
- Shares of Next have fallen just over 13% since the start of the year.
- Read the full statementhere
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