Coldwater warns of 4Q loss; shares tumble 32%

Women’s apparel cataloger Coldwater Creek (Nasdaq: CWTR) said it would fall short of its third-quarter projections and warned of a fourth-quarter loss. The Street hammered its stock 32%, to close at $18.20.

Sandpoint, ID-based Coldwater said preliminary 3Q net sales will be $139 million-$141.0 million, with net earnings of approximately $0.14-$0.16 per diluted share. This compares with $0.64 per diluted share, on net sales of $136.6 million, for the fiscal third quarter of 2000.

For the fourth quarter, Coldwater expects sales of $104 million-$114 million, resulting in a net loss of $1.1 million-$1.5 million.

Coldwater based the lowered expectations on its underperforming Northcountry catalog. “We now believe our Northcountry product mix for fall was too heavy in saturated colors and fabrics,” CEO Georgia Shonk-Simmons said in a statement, “which were not received as well as anticipated. Consequently, the return on catalog marketing dollars invested did not meet our expectations, which negatively impacted selling, general, and administrative expenses.”

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