Shoe Carnival Q1 Down

Shoe Carnival Inc.’s first-quarter profit fell, but still came in above the Street’s estimate.

For the period ended May 4, net income at the Evansville, Ind.-based firm was $9.5 million, or 47 cents a share, compared with $11 million, or 54 cents, in the first quarter last year.

Net sales advanced 4.3 percent to $232.3 million, from $222.6 million, despite comparable-store sales slipping 0.8 percent during the period.

Analysts were expecting earnings per share to come in at 41 cents, on revenue of $228.7 million, as polled by Yahoo Finance.

Cliff Sifford, president and CEO of Shoe Carnival, said in a statement that the first quarter was challenging due to cold, wet weather through March, compared with the same period a year ago.

“However, our sales trend improved significantly in April with the arrival of warm weather, which helped us mitigate our comparable-store sales decline. We concluded the quarter with earnings above our expectations,” he said.

Sifford added, “We remain optimistic with the continued positive performance of our athletic categories on top of a strong performance in 2012, which gives us confidence as we prepare for the very important back-to-school season.”

Looking to the second quarter, Shoe Carnival expects revenue to be between $217 million and $220 million, on the back of a comp-store sales increase in the range of 3 percent to 5 percent. EPS is expected to come in between 26 cents and 30 cents.

The firm’s cash and cash equivalents stood at $34.1 million as of the end of the period, down from $92.3 million a year ago. A majority of the funds went toward accounts payable and other operating activities.

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