* Second-quarter earnings/shr $0.36 vs est $0.41
* Second-quarter sales $1.22 bln vs est $1.24 bln
* Cuts full-year adj earnings/shr view to $2.80 to $2.95
* Shares fall 21 pct
Aug 23 Big Lots Inc's quarterly results
missed analysts' estimates and the close-out retailer cut its
full-year adjusted earnings forecast for the second time as it
expects further weakness in the sales of higher-margin
Shares of the company, which stocks products that have been
overproduced, discontinued, or rejected by other retailers, fell
21 percent to $30.51 -- their lowest in a year -- on Thursday
morning. The stock was the biggest percentage loser on the New
York Stock Exchange.
Several retailers have resorted to discounts as a weak
economy prompts shoppers to scale back spending on big-ticket
and non-essential items.
Big Lots, which recently expanded its consumables, home and
furniture segments, said sales of more profitable products such
as mattresses and upholstery fell in the second quarter.
Sales of discretionary products continue to be soft in the
current quarter, forcing the company to offer markdowns.
"Seventy percent of our business which is discretionary is
where we really need to see some improvement in trend before we
get more optimistic in our guidance," a company executive said
on a conference call.
Big Lots now expects fiscal 2012 adjusted earnings of $2.80
to $2.95 per share, lower than its previous forecast of $3.25 to
$3.40 per share.
Analysts on average were expecting a profit of $3.29 per
share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Big Lots appointed Timothy Johnson as its new chief
financial officer earlier in the day. It also named John Martin
its chief merchandising officer as part of a plan to drive
traffic by testing new products including coolers and freezers
as well as remodeling its stores.
2ND-QTR LAGS ESTIMATES
Markdowns pushed down gross margins to 39.2 percent from
39.5 percent in the second quarter. Selling and administrative
costs as a percentage of sales rose to 33.8 percent from 32.5
percent a year earlier.
Columbus, Ohio-based Big Lots acquired Liquidation World
Inc, a Canadian close-out retailer, last May but the business
has been losing money so far.
On an adjusted basis loss at the company's Canadian
operations widened to 5 cents per share in the second quarter,
from 2 cents per share, a year earlier.
The company's second-quarter profit from continuing
operations fell to $22.1 million, or 36 cents per share, from
$35.7 million, or 50 cents per share, a year earlier.
Revenue rose 4 percent to $1.22 billion.
Analysts on average had expected earnings of 41 cents per
share on revenue of $1.24 billion.