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Dec 6, 2018

Lululemon falls as sales growth shows signs of cooling down

Slowing sales outlook drags down Lululemon shares

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Lululemon Athletica Inc. (LULU.O) posted another quarter of double-digit sales growth, but shares fell as the pace showed signs of tapering off.

Key Insights

  • Comparable-store sales rose 18 percent in the third quarter, beating analysts’ projection for a 13.6 per cent gain. But the company forecast the key gauge would slow to high-single or low-double digits in the fourth quarter.
  • Lululemon is the latest example of a retailer growing rapidly, but not enough to please investors. In this case, it was comparable-store sales that are expected to slow this quarter from 18 per cent in the third quarter and a 19 per cent gain the previous period.
  • E-commerce sales surged 46 per cent on a constant currency basis. But with Lululemon’s website still relatively young, these comparisons may be getting tougher going forward.

Market Reaction

  • Shares fell as much as 14 per cent in late trading before paring losses. They’ve gained 67 per cent this year through Thursday’s close.