Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: Quarterly results served with a side of caution


Check out quarterly results being dished up with a big side of caution.

Polo Ralph Lauren reported higher second quarter profit, citing increased sales and a lower tax rate.

Polo, whose brands include Polo, Chaps and Club Monaco, affirmed its earnings outlook for fiscal 2009, but it tempered its full-year sales forecast. It now expects a low single-digit increase in 2009 revenue, instead of a low-to-mid single digit increase as earlier expected.

Meanwhile, Maidenform Brands posted better-than-expected third-quarter results as it sold more of its undergarments to department stores and national retail chains.

But as customers like Boscov’s and Mervyns go out of business, it cut its 2008 earnings per share forecast to $1.17 to $1.21 from a prior outlook of $1.22 to $1.30. Maidenform also expects full year net sales to be flat to down 1 percent, compared with a previous view for net sales to be down 1 percent to up 1 percent.