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American Eagle reports EPS of $0.29 for Q2
Aug '08
American Eagle Outfitters Inc announced that earnings for the 13 weeks ended August 2, 2008 decreased 22% to $0.29 per diluted share, compared to the 13 week period ended August 4, 2007.

“The second quarter financial results were not up to our standards,” said Jim O'Donnell, Chief Executive Officer. “While the consumer environment is clearly challenging, we are taking steps to invigorate our business. We are strengthening our competitive position by underscoring AE's value pricing, which is consistent with our heritage of great value together with excellent quality.

Additionally, we are driving improvements within our merchandise assortments. Yet, we are managing to the current macro environment, with tight inventories and we continue to pursue expense opportunities. As I look ahead to 2009 and beyond, I have tremendous confidence in the strength of our brands, our teams, and that we are positioning our company for improved financial performance, future growth and success.”

Second Quarter Results:
Total sales for the 13 weeks ended August 2, 2008 decreased 2% to $688.8 million compared to $703.2 million for the 13 week period ended August 4, 2007. Second quarter comparable store sales decreased 9%, compared to a 2% increase last year.

Gross profit for the second quarter was $289.4 million, or 42.0% as a rate to sales, compared to $316.4 million, or 45.0% as a rate to sales last year. Merchandise margin declined by 80 basis points. Buying, occupancy and warehousing costs increased by 220 basis points, due to de-leveraging in rent related to new store openings and the second quarter comparable store sales decline.

Selling, general and administrative expenses of $167.9 million increased to 24.4% as a rate to sales from $166.4 million, or 23.7% as a rate last year. The higher rate this quarter is primarily due to the comparable store sales decline. The company de-leveraged advertising. Nearly all other operating expenses were flat to last year as a rate to sales.

Operating income for the quarter was $89.4 million, compared to $122.7 million last year. The operating margin was 13.0%, compared to 17.4% last year.

The company's tax rate for the second quarter was 35.9%, compared to 38.1% last year. The lower effective rate was due to favorable state tax settlements.

The company generated net income during the second quarter of $59.8 million, compared to $81.3 million last year. As a percent to sales, net income was 8.7%, compared to 11.6% last year.

Total merchandise inventories at the end of the second quarter were $341.5 million, an increase of $20.2 million compared to last year. Inventory (excluding e-commerce) decreased 8% on a per square foot basis from a year ago.

Real Estate:
In the second quarter, the company opened 9 AE stores, 26 aerie stores and 1 MARTIN + OSA stores. In fiscal 2008, the company plans to open 36 AE stores, 77 aerie stores and 10 MARTIN + OSA stores. Together with approximately 31 AE store remodels, the company expects to grow square footage by approximately 12% in fiscal 2008.

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