Bed Bath & Beyond 3Q revenue falls short

UNION, N.J. (AP) -- Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. reported Wednesday that its fiscal third-quarter profit increased nearly 2 percent. But its earnings forecast for the current quarter fell shy of Wall Street's expectations and its shares fell in after-hours trading.

The company, based in Union, N.J., runs Bed Bath & Beyond, Cost Plus World Market, Christmas Tree Shops and other stores across the country.

It earned $232.8 million, or $1.03 per share, for the quarter that ended Nov. 24. That is up from $228.5 million, or 95 cents per share, in the same quarter last year. Its revenue increased 15 percent to $2.7 billion.

Analysts polled by FactSet were expecting the company to earn $1.02 per share on revenue of $2.73 billion.

Bed Bath & Beyond said that revenue from its stores open at least a year increased 1.7 percent compared with a gain of 4.1 percent last year. That is considered a key indicator of a retailer's financial performance as it strips away the impact of recently opened or closed stores.

The company estimates Hurricane Sandy lowered the measure by about 0.9 percent during the period.

Bed Bath & Beyond said it expects to earn $1.60 to $1.67 per share for its fourth quarter and $4.48 to $4.54 for the full fiscal year. Analysts were forecasting earnings of $1.75 and $4.62 per share respectively.

The company also said that its board has authorized a new $2.5 billion share repurchase program.

Shares of the company fell 4 percent in after-hours trading to $58. Its stock closed regular trading down 11 cents at $60.28.