UPDATE 1-Stockmann cuts outlook after bigger than expected quarterly loss

Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:19am EDT

* Q1 op loss 43.9 mln euros vs f'cast 35 mln loss

* Cuts full-year sales and profit outlook

* Says expects sales in euros to decrease

* Sees operating profit not exceeding figure for 2013

* Shares down 2.3 pct (Adds details, shares)

HELSINKI, April 29 (Reuters) - Finnish department store chain Stockmann lowered its sales and profit outlook on Tuesday as it reported a larger-than-expected first quarter loss, due to weak demand in Finland and Russia and the weaker Russian rouble.

Shares in the company opened down 2.3 percent.

Stockmann's operating loss reached 43.9 million euros ($60.8 million) in January-March, compared with a forecast range of between 30 million and 38 million in a poll of analysts and an average estimate of 35 million.

The company also cut its full-year sales and profit outlook, saying it expected sales in euros to decrease and operating profit not to exceed the figure for 2013.

The retailer had previously expected slight sales growth in comparable exchange rates and a somewhat higher operating profit this year than in 2013.

"There are no signs of a quick recovery for the Russian rouble and the visibility in the Russian market is very weak. The retail market in Finland also remains challenging," Stockmann Chief Executive Hannu Penttila said in a statement.

($1 = 0.7223 Euros) (Reporting by Sakari Suoninen; Editing by Prateek Chatterjee and David Holmes)

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