Big 5 says key revenue measure falls for 4Q

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) — Big 5 Sporting Goods Corp. said on Wednesday that fourth-quarter revenue was flat despite a drop in sales at stores open at least a year.

Those sales at stores open at least a year fell 2.1 percent for the quarter as warmer-than-usual weather cut into sales of winter products, particularly winter apparel. Sales at stores open at least a year is a key revenue measure for retailers because it excludes stores that opened or closed during the year.

Revenue was flat at $226.7 million. Analysts had been expecting $234.4 million, according to FactSet.

The company said it now expects fourth-quarter earnings per share of 2 cents to 5 cents and full-year earnings of 55 cents to 58 cents. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had been expecting a fourth-quarter profit of 21 cents per share and a 2011 profit of 73 cents per share.

The company expects to release full fourth-quarter and full-year results by the end of February.

Steven G. Miller, the company's chairman, president, and CEO, said sales rose during the week before Christmas, but after-Christmas sales were "particularly soft."

Big 5 shares tumbled 67 cents, or 7 percent, to $8.80 in extended trading following the release of the sales numbers. They ended the regular session down 49 cents, or 4.9 percent, at $9.47.