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Shoe Carnival Q4 Slips as Expected

Shoe Carnival Inc.’s fourth-quarter results were in line with the firm’s updated guidance.

For the period ended Feb. 2, the Evansville, Ind.-based retailer earned a net income of $3.2 million, or 13 cents a share, compared with $3.3 million, or 16 cents a share, in the same period a year ago.

Revenue grew 13.1 percent to $205.7 million, from $181.9 million.

For the full year, Shoe Carnival’s profit increased to $29.3 million, or $1.43 a share, from $26.4 million, or $1.31, from 2011. Net sales advanced 12.1 percent to $855.0 million, from $762.5 million, on the back of a comparable-store sales increase of 4.5 percent.

Looking ahead, Shoe Carnival expects first-quarter earnings to be impacted by a slow spring selling season. Earnings are expected to come in between 36 cents and 44 cents a share, on revenue of $226 million to $232 million. Comps are expected to decrease between 2 percent and 4 percent.

“During March this year, we experienced cold, wet weather across our central and northern regions, generating comparatively slower sales of our higher-margin spring sandal and athletic categories. This slow start to the spring selling season has resulted in our conservative first-quarter outlook,” Cliff Sifford, Shoe Carnival’s president and CEO, said in a statement.

“At the same time, we are pleased to report that our southern region has generated mid-single-digit comparable-store sales increases to date in the first quarter of fiscal 2013,” he added. “This leaves us feeling confident that, as more seasonal weather arrives across our markets, we are well positioned with the right product assortment to meet the spring footwear needs of our customers. We believe second-quarter comparable-store sales will increase up to mid-single digits.”

Shoe Carnival closed the year with $45.8 million in cash, down from $70.6 million, and no debt.

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