Feb 5, 2015
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Estee Lauder cuts forecast, citing strong dollar

Feb 5, 2015

Estee Lauder Cos Inc said full-year sales would fall more than it had forecast, hurt by a stronger dollar and slowing growth in Hong Kong and China.

The company reported a better-than-expected rise in revenue in the second quarter, helped by higher demand for its skin care and makeup products such as Clinique lotions and Pure Color Envy lipstick during the holiday shopping season.

The Limited Edition Modern Muse gift collection | Photo: Estée Lauder

The maker of M.A.C., Bobbi Brown and Estee Lauder cosmetics, said it now expected adjusted earnings of $2.93-$3.01 per share on net sales decline of up to 2 percent for the year ending June 30.

It had earlier forecast adjusted earnings of $3.03-$3.11 per share and sales to be flat or down 1 percent.

The rise of the dollar over the past nine months has reduced the value of overseas sales. A stronger dollar also makes U.S.-made products more expensive for consumers in other currencies and lowers demand.

Up to Wednesday, the dollar had risen 17.8 percent against major currencies since June 30, 2014.

Estee Lauder received about 40 percent of its net sales from the Americas in the second quarter.

Net income attributable to the company rose to $435.7 million, or $1.13 per share, in the quarter ended Dec. 31, from $432.5 million, or $1.09 per share, a year earlier.

Net sales rose 1 percent to $3.04 billion

Analysts on average had expected earnings of $1.05 per share on revenue of $3.01 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Smaller rival Coty Inc, known for its Calvin Klein and Davidoff perfume brands, reported a bigger-than-expected drop in quarterly revenue as sales in its fragrances business, it biggest, fell 5 percent.

Estee Lauder's shares were down 3.5 percent in thin premarket trading on Thursday. Up to Wednesday's close of $72.55, they have risen 11 percent in the last 12 months.

$1 = £0.65

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