Big Lots Inc. Earnings: The Streak is Broken

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Big Lots Inc. (NYSE:BIG) reported net income above Wall Street’s expectations for the fourth quarter. Big Lots operates as a broadline closeout retailer through its subsidiaries in the United States. It sells a number of products, including food, home decor, and furniture.

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Big Lots Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Fourth Quarter

Results: Net income for Big Lots Inc. rose to $114.7 million ($1.75 per share) vs. $110.1 million ($1.46 per share) in the same quarter a year earlier. This marks a rise of 4.2% from the year-earlier quarter.

Revenue: Rose 9.9% to $1.67 billion from the year-earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: Big Lots Inc. reported adjusted net income of $1.83 per share. By that measure, the company beat the mean estimate of $1.74 per share. Analysts were expecting revenue of $1.66 billion.

Quoting Management: Steve Fishman, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President stated, “We are very pleased to deliver our fifth consecutive year of record operating profit in the U.S. and record EPS for the overall Company. We were aggressive this year in certain key merchandise initiatives and our strategies accelerated sales trends as the year progressed. We successfully opened 92 new stores in the U.S. and expanded our footprint into Canada with the acquisition of Liquidation World. We operated as good stewards of our cash and shareholders’ capital as we invested in long-term growth opportunities, both in the U.S. and Canada, while returning $359 million of cash back to shareholders through our share repurchase efforts.”

Key Stats:

The profit increase last quarter broke a three-quarter streak of profit decreases. In the third quarter, net income fell 76.3% from the year earlier, while the figure dropped 8.2% in the second quarter and 6.1% in the first quarter.

Revenue has now gone up in each of the last three quarters. In the third quarter, revenue rose 7.8% to $1.14 billion while the figure rose 2.2% in the second quarter from the year earlier.

The company topped expectations last quarter after falling short of forecasts in the third quarter with net income of 6 cents versus a mean estimate of net income of 10 cents per share.

Looking Forward: Analysts appear increasingly optimistic about the company’s results for the next quarter. The average estimate for the first quarter of the next fiscal year has moved up from 78 cents a share to 81 cents over the last ninety days. For the fiscal year, the average estimate has moved up from $2.89 a share to $2.97 over the last thirty days.

(Company fundamentals provided by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)

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To contact the reporter on this story: Derek Hoffman at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at