Tiffany reports 46% earnings increase

Tiffany & Co. reported a 46% increase in its third-quarter earnings, as sales rose 10% and the upscale jeweler recorded an $8 million tax gain, The Associated Press reports.

Tiffany earned $35.18 million, or 24 cents per share, in the three months ended Oct. 31. That compares with $24.03 million, or 16 cents per share, in the year-ago period.

Excluding the nonrecurring tax gain of five cents per share, Tiffany earned 19 cents per share for the third quarter.

Net sales for the third quarter rose to $366.03 million, from $333.07 million a year ago. On a constant exchange rate basis, worldwide same-store sales were up 3%.

U.S. retail sales gained 11% to $168.5 million in the third quarter as same-store sales rose 9%.

International retail sales rose 6% to $156.28 million in the third quarter. On a constant exchange rate basis, same-store retail store sales declined 7% in Japan. Direct Marketing sales gained 11% to $37.34 million in the third quarter. Internet/Catalog sales rose 19% in the third quarter.

Michael J. Kowalski, president and chief executive, reportedly said that he expects that sales will be up in the low double digits in the fourth quarter, and he projects same-store sales in the United States to increase in the mid- single digit range.

For the nine months ended Oct. 31, Tiffany posted earnings of $100.6 million, or 68 cents per share, compared with $90.84 million, or 60 cents per share in the year-ago period.

Sales were $1.087 billion in the nine-month period, compared with $1.04 billion a year ago.