Fashion retailer H&M’s Sept-Nov operating profit tumbles more than expected

(In the last paragraph, change the period from December 1st to December 25th to December 1st to January 25th)

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) – H&M, the world’s second-largest fashion retailer, reported on Friday that its operating profit for the September-November period fell significantly more than expected.

The Swedish Group’s operating profit for the fourth quarter was SEK 821 million ($79.7 million). That was against his $6.26 billion in the same period last year and the average forecast of $3.67 billion according to Refinitiv analyst polls.

“The decline in earnings in the fourth quarter compared to the same period last year is mainly explained by negative external factors, the loss of operating income previously contributed by Russia and one-time costs of our cost and efficiency programs.” said in a statement.

Last September, H&M launched an initiative to cut costs by 2 billion crowns a year, and from the second half of 2023, it will start to see savings from job cuts and other measures.

The group warned in November that it would cut about 1,500 jobs in the program’s fourth quarter and book restructuring costs of about 800 million crowns.

The company announced last year that it would pull out of Russia, citing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

H&M said December 1-January sales were up 5% in local currencies for the 25th quarter, the start of the first quarter.

($1 = 10.2969 Swedish crowns)

(Reporting by Marie Mannes and Anna Ringstrom in Stockholm, Editing by Terje Solsvik)

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