It may have been a rough day for the market — the Dow plunged more than 600 points today — but one couldn’t tell by looking at Foot Locker’s stock.
The athletic footwear retailer’s shares are surging in after hours trading — up more than 11 percent to $51.60 as of 4:30 p.m. ET — after the firm posted third-quarter profits that blew past expectations.
Foot Locker said its earnings during the period advanced 27 percent to $130 million, or $1.14 per diluted share. Excluding pre-tax charges and other items, the company’s earnings per share improved 9 percent to 95 cent per share, besting market watchers’ forecast of 92 cents per share.
Sales held steady year over year at $1.86 billion, which modestly topped analysts’ bets of $1.85 billion. Meanwhile, its comparable store sales edged up 2.9 percent as it worked to make its outposts more experiential in hopes of luring in digital-obsessed consumers.
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Today’s results are welcome news for investors who had been down on the athletic retail behemoth in recent months as it shouldered slowing momentum that it mostly blamed on weak product releases by its brand partners. But, those tides have turned, according to chairman and CEO Dick Johnson.
“Our accelerating comparable sales and improving bottom line reflect the strategic partnerships with our vendors, as well as our efforts to inspire and empower youth culture and create deeper connections with local communities,” said Johnson. “We believe we are well positioned to produce even stronger results in the all-important holiday selling season and the fourth quarter overall.”
Ahead of its after-market surge, Foot Locker had ended the trading day in the red 5.5 percent, in tandem with much of the shoe and retail industry’s stocks hit by a market wide sell off. The Dow, Nasdaq and S&P 500 all reversed their 2018 gains today, spooked by a range of factors including the tech slowdown, the trade war and tariffs as well as fears retailers won’t pull off the robust holiday quarter the industry has been hoping for.