Lululemon Jumps as Wall Street Says Holiday Sales Stand Out

(Bloomberg) -- Lululemon Athletica Inc. rose the most in more than four months after the yogawear company boosted its quarterly sales and profit forecast ahead of the ICR Conference in Orlando this week. The move follows a series of holiday sales misses last week and prompted a chorus of praise from analysts.

"In what is turning out to be a more mixed holiday for retailers, we view these results as industry leading," a MKM Partners analyst wrote.

The company said comparable-store sales increased in the high-single to low-double digits for the current quarter, which ends Feb. 3. Lululemon also sees total sales and adjusted profit coming in higher than its previous forecasts.

Here’s what Wall Street is saying:

Stifel, Jim Duffy

Lululemon’s guidance for stronger-than-anticipated holiday season stands out in the retail sector and highlights “continued brand resonance and execution through the important holiday season.” Duffy is “impressed by the magnitude of the upside” indicated by the pre-announcement.

Reiterates buy rating, raises price target to $152 from $151

Wedbush, Jen Redding

Lululemon is an “impressive growth story” with compelling fundamentals that include "a strong e-commerce segment with meaningful growth ahead, and international expansion opportunities.”

The company’s investments in data analytics and digital marketing will contribute to product margins in the long-term.

Reiterates outperform, price target $176

MKM Partners, Roxanne Meyer

The compares "are more favorable than expected."

Lululemon’s results reflect “the strength of product, technology initiatives, and management execution.”

The results also likely show growth in e-commerce in the mid-40 percent range, making it 26 percent of total sales for the year.

Reiterates buy, price target $177

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