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It's Your Problem

“The Dollar is our currency, but it’s your problem.”

-John Connolly, US Treasury Secretary (1971)

 

That’s the quote Jim Rickards uses to start Chapter 5 of Currency Wars. From an economic history perspective, it’s a critical quote to contextualize as President Richard Nixon was the first Republican President to go all-in Keynesian.

 

I’m not a Republican or Democrat. I am Canadian. So sometimes I just have to laugh when Republicans blame Obama for everything. It’s as if these partisan political pundits think we are dumb enough to believe that the likes of Nixon and Bush didn’t uphold the same monetary and fiscal policies to debauch the Dollar.

 

At least Nixon admitted it when he said plainly, “we’re all Keynesians now.” But are we? Inquiring minds in this country would like to know. Are we as numb to economic reality as the economically partisan media? Being Keynesian (Republican or Democrat) is partisan you know. And that probably had something to do with Republican veteran Lugar losing to the Tea Party in Indiana.

 

Back to the Global Macro Grind

 

You can blame Greece or Canada at this point, but the market doesn’t care to hear the excuses. The global economy is as interconnected as it has been for the last 5 years. The idea of “de-coupling” is only something the Sell-Side could make up.

 

If you didn’t know that the US Dollar is still the world’s reserve currency and that its daily, weekly, and monthly moves are driving what we call The Correlation Risk, now you know.

 

The US Dollar Index is having its 6th consecutive up day (touching $80 this morning), and one of our major Global Macro Theme calls for Q2 2012, Bernanke’s Bubbles (as in Commodities), are popping.

 

Since the Old Wall begged for Bernanke to do it, market expectations became addicted to it. Now it, as in “It’s Your Problem”, is on the tape.

 

Deflating The Inflation of easy money Commodity bubbles in Gold, Oil, etc. are riding the following immediate-term TRADE correlations to the US Dollar: 

  1. Gold -0.85
  2. Palladium -0.81
  3. Copper -0.67
  4. Oil -0.84
  5. Heating Oil -0.82
  6. Soybeans -0.79 

If you want to call these mathematical ironies, you can. As a matter of fact, you can call anything in this profession whatever you want to call it until you have to report your performance results back to your clients. If you are just a pundit, not held accountable to the TimeStamps of what you say and when, I can’t help you from yourself. Twitter’s gotcha!

 

In our 50 slide Q2 Global Macro Themes Deck (April 2012) we walked through the Top 10 Bernanke Bubbles (email if you’d like to review it with refreshed risk management levels).

 

The aforementioned immediate-term TRADE correlations anchor on 6 commodities. If you want to look at The Correlation Risk from a bigger picture perspective, here’s how the USD Index is trending versus some fairly major stuff: 

  1. CRB All-Commodities Index (19 Commodities) = -0.93
  2. S&P 500 = -0.85
  3. Euro Stoxx 600 = -0.84 

It’s Your Problem” or its your opportunity now. It’s a major performance problem if you are long anything US, European, or Japanese Equities (all Keynesian Policy Bubbles) or commodities. It has been since the middle of March.

 

Now plenty people who are long Gold (I have a zip lock bag of the stuff in my desk, fyi) will quickly say that’s precisely why they are long Gold – because it’s “protection against all the money printing and Keynesian central planners” of the world.

 

Fair e-nuff.

 

But what if the world is pricing in an end to the Nixonian madness? They did in the early 1980’s. What if we are on the verge of actually getting off the iQe drugs? Gold being up for 12 consecutive years naturally implies some mean reversion risk to the idea that Americans are dumb enough to vote for Dollar Debauchery for much longer.

 

In addition to their Keynesian economic policy making teams, Bush and Obama have one thing in common – Ben Bernanke. This is not unlike what Nixon and Carter had in common – Arthur Burns (who was also tasked, politically, with devaluing the Dollar and monetizing US Treasury debt).

 

Got Causality? 

  1. Dollar Debauchery in both the 1970’s and 2000’s perpetuated commodity price inflation
  2. Dollar Debauchery in both the 1970s and 2000’s perpetuated fear-mongering by policy makers to back their policies
  3. Dollar Debauchery in both the 1970s and 2000’s perpetuated a lack of confidence/trust and employment growth 

Both GDP Growth and US Employment Growth were as nasty as they have ever been (by decade) in both the Nixon/Carter and Bush/Obama periods of raging Keynesian Economic policy influence.

 

So, here’s a little reminder from little old me in New Haven, CT this morning to all of the Keynesians, from Larry Summers to Ben Bernanke, and all of their offspring – It’s Your Problem now. If that sounds like I am picking a fight, that’s old news. I did that in our April Themes presentation too. We are officially Fighting The Fed (and winning).

 

My immediate-term support and resistance ranges for Gold, Oil (Brent), US Dollar Index, Euro (EUR/USD), and the SP500 are now $1, $110.92-113.87, $79.42-79.88, $1.29-1.31, and 1, respectively.

 

Best of luck out there today,

KM

 

Keith R. McCullough
Chief Executive Officer

 

It's Your Problem - Chart of the Day

 

It's Your Problem - Virtual Portfolio



THE HEDGEYE DAILY OUTLOOK

TODAY’S S&P 500 SET-UP – May 9, 2012


As we look at today’s set up for the S&P 500, the range is 17 points or -1.08% downside to 1349 and 0.17% upside to 1366. 

                                            

SECTOR AND GLOBAL PERFORMANCE

 

THE HEDGEYE DAILY OUTLOOK - 1

 

THE HEDGEYE DAILY OUTLOOK - 2

 

THE HEDGEYE DAILY OUTLOOK - 3

 

 

EQUITY SENTIMENT:

  • ADVANCE/DECLINE LINE: on 5/08 NYSE -613
    • Down from the prior day’s trading of 252
  • VOLUME: on 5/08 NYSE 902.47
    • Increase versus prior day’s trading of 19.64%
  • VIX:  as of 5/08 was at 19.05
    • Increase versus most recent day’s trading of 0.58%
    • Year-to-date decrease of -18.59%
  • SPX PUT/CALL RATIO: as of 05/08 closed at 2.03
    • Up from the day prior at 1.31 

CREDIT/ECONOMIC MARKET LOOK:

  • TED SPREAD: as of this morning 38
  • 3-MONTH T-BILL YIELD: as of this morning 0.09%
  • 10-Year: as of this morning 1.82
    • Decrease from prior day’s trading at 1.84
  • YIELD CURVE: as of this morning 1.57
    • Down from prior day’s trading of 1.59 

MACRO DATA POINTS (Bloomberg Estimates):

  • 7am: MBA Mortgage Applications, week of May 4 (prior 0.1%)
  • 10am: Wholesale Inventories, Mar., est. 0.6% (prior 0.9%)
  • 10am: Fed’s Kocherlakota speaks in Minneapolis
  • 10:30am: DoE inventories
  • 10:45am: Fed’s Pianalto speaks in Lexington, Kentucky
  • 12pm: Fed’s Plosser speaks in Philadelphia
  • 1pm: U.S. to sell $24b 10-yr notes 

GOVERNMENT:

  • President Obama meets with NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen to finalize plans for NATO Summit in Chicago, 2:10pm
  • Chamber of Commerce holds quarterly economic briefing, 8:45am
  • Postal Service announces plan for smallest post offices, 10am
  • House lawmakers hold news conference calling for a special prosecutor to investigate the collapse of MF Global, 11am
  • House, Senate in session:
    • House Judiciary holds hearing on FBI oversight, with testimony from Robert Mueller, 10am
    • House Natural Resources hearing on offshore drilling, 10am
    • House Armed Services marks up defense authorization bill, 10am
    • House Financial Svcs subcommittee holds hearing on regulatory compliance costs for small financial institutions, 10am
    • Senate Banking panel holds hearing on need for long-term reauthorization of national flood insurance program, 10am
    • Former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker; FDIC member Thomas Hoenig testify before Senate Banking panel on limiting federal support for financial institutions, 2pm
    • World Economic Forum takes place in Ethiopia 

WHAT TO WATCH:

  • S&P 500, Dow index futures lower; Dow has dropped the previous five sessions amid concerns of political wrangling in Europe
  • Glaxo to begin hostile offer for Human Genome at $13/shr
  • Toyota forecasts profit will double to highest in five years
  • China passenger-vehicle sales rise 13%, exceeding estimates
  • Confidence among U.S. CEOs in 1Q reaches highest level in 3 yrs
  • Green Mountain Coffee removes chairman after stock sale
  • Verizon Wireless Airwaves purchase said to raise U.S. concerns
  • U.K. retail sales plunge by most in more than a year, BRC says
  • Commerzbank exceeds capital target as profit misses estimates
  • FDA advisory panel meets on PFE’s tofacitinib
  • Disney profit rises 21% on theme parks, says there will be “Avengers” sequel 

EARNINGS:

    • Spectrum Brands Holdings (SPB) 6am, $0.31
    • Quebecor Inc (QBR/B CN) 6am, C$0.68
    • Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group (DTG) 6am, $1.35
    • Agrium (AGU CN) 6:30am, $1.04
    • Enbridge (ENB CN) 7am, C$0.48
    • AOL (AOL) 7am, $0.17
    • Tim Hortons (THI CN) 7:30am, C$0.59
    • Dean Foods (DF) 7:35am, $0.21
    • Ariad Pharmaceuticals (ARIA) 7:35am, $(0.25)
    • Macy’s (M) 8am, $0.40; Preview
    • Priceline.com (PCLN) 4pm, $3.95
    • MEMC Electronic Materials (WFR) 4:01pm, $(0.26)
    • News Corp (NWSA) 4:03pm, $0.31
    • Live Nation Entertainment (LYV) 4:03pm, $(0.41)
    • Cisco Systems (CSCO) 4:05pm, $0.47
    • Universal Display (PANL) 4:05pm, $0.04
    • Activision Blizzard (ATVI) 4:05pm, $0.04
    • Alterra Capital Holdings (ALTE) 4:05pm, $0.62
    • BMC Software (BMC) 4:05pm, $0.80
    • Tesla Motors (TSLA) 4:10pm, $(0.70)
    • Monster Beverage (MNST) 4:10pm, $0.38
    • CenturyLink (CTL) 4:25pm, $0.58
    • TELUS (T CN) post-mkt, C$1.04    

COMMODITY/GROWTH EXPECTATION (HEADLINES FROM BLOOMBERG)

 

GOLD – no iQe4 upgrade option = down Gold, or at least that’s how Gold acts; its immediate-term TRADE correlation to the USD is also -0.85, so with the USD up for 6 consecutive days, if you didn’t know about the Correlation Risk, now you know. Ron Paul saying abolish Bernanke in DC yesterday and Tea Party win vs Lugar – there’s an American Zeitgeist out there called The People. 

  • Silver Forecasters Bullish as Hedge Funds Retreat: Commodities
  • Oil Falls Sixth Day in Longest Drop Since 2010; SocGen Says Buy
  • India to Rival Vietnam, Dethrone Thailand as Top Rice Seller
  • China Said to Plan Auction of 3 Million Tons of Soybean Reserves
  • Ex-Deutsche Securities Banker Plans Commodities Hedge Fund
  • Copper Declines for a Fifth Day as Euro Debt Crisis May Worsen
  • Gold Drops to Four-Month Low in London on Concern Euro to Weaken
  • Corn Drops as U.S. Planting Gains, Boosting Supply Prospects
  • Palm Oil Declines to Two-Month Low on Greece Political Impasse
  • Sugar Gains on Rising Thai Premiums, Ramadan Demand; Cocoa Falls
  • Gold to Rebound to $1,700 an Ounce This Year: Technical Analysis
  • Sino-Forest Debt Insurance Set to Pay Out 71 Cents per Dollar
  • Thai Rice Output From Main Crop Set to Gain 21% on State Buying
  • Gasoline Seen at Earliest Peak in U.S. Since ‘98: Energy Markets
  • Ex-Deutsche Banker Plans Commodities Fund
  • OPEC Crude Drops Below $110 for First Time Since January
  • Glencore Says Commodity Demand ‘Healthy’ as Production Increases

THE HEDGEYE DAILY OUTLOOK - 4

 

 

CURRENCIES


THE HEDGEYE DAILY OUTLOOK - 5

 

 

EUROPEAN MARKETS


ITALY – we covered our short position in France yesterday; re-shorted Spain (down -2.3% this morning and continues to crash); and stayed short Italian stocks as we think they’ll be back in crash mode in no time (already down -18.9% from the YTD peak in March when most global Equity markets stopped going up, including the Russell2000).

 

THE HEDGEYE DAILY OUTLOOK - 6

 

 

ASIAN MARKETS


 ASIA – you can blame Europe or Canada or whoever, but the fact of the matter is that we live in a globally interconnected economy that doesn’t “de-couple.” India moved to QE yesterday and the market there didn’t care; China finally had a down day of -1.6%; and Japan is getting wrecked, down -1.5% overnight (down 17 of the last 23 days during a 12% draw-down).

 

THE HEDGEYE DAILY OUTLOOK - 7

 

 

MIDDLE EAST


THE HEDGEYE DAILY OUTLOOK - 8

 

 

 

The Hedgeye Macro Team

 


Early Look

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Relied upon by big institutional and individual investors across the world, this granular morning newsletter distills the latest and most vital market developments and insures that you are always in the know.


THE JACK OPTION

We see an asymmetric setup for Jack in the Box over the next three years.  For any clients looking for ideas on the long side, here is our favorite one on the three year duration.

 

The price of oil declining has moved some investors to look more closely at the consumer discretionary sector for long ideas.  Jack in the Box is one name that we like here and now.  The next catalyst for this stock is when 2QFY12 earnings are reported on May 15th.  We expect same-restaurant sales to beat expectations at Jack in the Box.  In addition, we believe that management will provide incrementally positive commentary on Qdoba, its growth prospects, and its operating margins. 

 

Following the investor day, much of the skepticism was based on Qdoba’s restaurant operating margin trending at 13.5%.  As the asset base matures we expect margins to rise. In its Investor Day materials management highlighted that, for Qdoba restaurants open more than three years, restaurant operating margins are at 18.5%.  We see an asymmetric risk setup for JACK at this point given the margin expansion that should follow as the Qdoba unit base matures. The leverage in this stock, as we see it, lies almost entirely with Qdoba.  The company unit base is projected to double by 2015.  If growth targets can be reached and unit economics improve, we see as much as 60% of upside in this name over the next three years.

 

 

Sum of the Parts – FY2012

 

How high margins can go is largely a function of how successful the company will be in increasing same-store sales.  Our sum of the part analysis, below, outlines our fundamental view on the stock over the next 6-9 months.  We believe that there is 8.5% of upside at current levels.  That view is predicated primarily on growth from Qdoba and the investment community awarding the stock a higher multiple, something that we think is overdue.  Wendy’s and Sonic include some of the names that are trading at higher multiples than JACK.  Given that Jack in the Box has completed a reimaging program of its main concept and is set to generate free cash flow of ~$75mm this year while driving the Qdoba growth story forward, it seems incongruous that Wendy’s, which is facing some serious issues over the next several years, would trade at a premium to Jack in the Box.

 

THE JACK OPTION - Jack SOTP near terms

 

 

Sum of the Parts – FY2015

 

It is always difficult to forecast what the future holds but, in the case of Jack in the Box, we see much more upside than downside.  Management is planning on growing the company-owned base of Qdoba stores to grow by 15-20% per year through 2015.  Franchisees are expected to add 30-40 units per year over the same time period.  Qdoba’s growth and expanding margins are the primary components of the long-term TAIL story.  The margin expansion that we show in the sum-of-the-parts analysis, below, can be attributed to what we expect to be a maturing store base, stronger sales trends, and opportunistic acquisitions of franchise restaurants. 

 

Even assuming an enterprise value of Jack in the Box level with what it is today, we believe that Qdoba’s growing and maturing store base can deliver outsized returns to shareholders.  Given that, according to Bloomberg, the sell side is currently divided on the stock – 3 Buys, 7 Holds, 3 Sells – there are plenty of skeptics to be won over if management can hit targets over the next few quarters.

 

THE JACK OPTION - jack sotp tail1

 

 

Quantitative Setup

 

Keith bought JACK today in the Hedgeye Virtual Portfolio as his model was indicating that the stock was immediate-term TRADE oversold.  Given Keith’s quantitative view of the stock along with our fundamental view on the stock, we believe that Jack in the Box is the most attractive stock in QSR over the longer term TAIL duration.

 

THE JACK OPTION - jack levels

 

Howard Penney

Managing Director

 

Rory Green

Analyst

 


FOSL: 1Q12 Report Card

Conclusion: FOSL results this morning are the latest to reflect slowing demand out of Europe, but are also one of the more bearish we’ve seen quarter-to-date. While FOSL is considered a fringe player in luxury accessories at best, lackluster jewelry sales were highlighted as a key drag on European wholesale putting other luxury players on notice. This is inconsistent with continued strength through Q1 out of mainstream European luxury brands (Hermes, PPR, Burberrry, etc.), but noteworthy nonetheless. 

 

What Drove the Miss?

Although FOSL reported a head line beat ($0.93 vs. $0.92E), adjusted 1Q12 EPS was actually $0.84 after accounting for a $0.09 discreet tax benefit. As such, the miss was due primarily to the top line growing only 10% vs. +15E with Europe (27% of sales) accounting for 3pts of FOSL’s 5pt top-line shortfall. While performance in France and the UK were strong in Q1, Germany was flat with Spain & Italy down double digits resulting in total European wholesale revenues +1% vs. +12E. It’s worth noting that Europe is also FOSL’s most profitable region (see table below). Although Inventory growth improved sequentially down 4 points to +27%, the slowing top line drove the SIGMA further into the danger zone. Despite management pointing to trends in Germany improving slightly in April, 9 weeks remain in Q2 and continued weakness in Spain and Italy resulted in management reducing expectations in Europe to +LSD-MSD growth in F12 from the prior low to mid teen outlook. With GM and SG&A assumptions largely unchanged, full year organic EPS expectations (ex Skagen) are now $5.23-$5.33, down $0.17 vs. prior $5.40-$5.50. FOSL expects Skagen to add a net $0.07 to earnings in 2012.  

 

FOSL: 1Q12 Report Card - FOSL EBIT

 

FOSL: 1Q12 Report Card - FOSL SIGMA

 

Deltas in Forward Looking Commentary?

 

In order to properly measure performance relative to original expectations, we look at management’s 2012 guidance headed into the quarter as well as the key deltas in Q1 results vs. expectations. Comments in red reflect any changes to future outlook:

 

 

First Quarter Guidance:

  • Revenue expected to grow 15% (slightly higher constant currency) MISS: Revenues came in +10% vs +15E with shortcomings in Europe (+1% vs +12E) contributing 3 points to the 5 points top line growth miss
  • 1Q12 EPS expected to be $0.90-$0.92 MISS: Although headline EPS was $0.93 vs $0.92E,  adjusted for the $0.09 tax benefit, EPS was $0.84 vs. $0.92   

Full Year Guidance:

  • EPS $5.40-$5.50 (ex Skagen) REDUCED: now $5.23 to $5.33 ex Skagen (FOSL guided to $5.30-5.40 incl $0.07 net benefit from Skagen)
  • Revenues: +15% (constant currency higher, ex Skagen) REDUCED: organic growth expected to be +11% overall (guided to +16% with 5% contribution from Skagen) driven primarily by softness in Europe
  • Europe Revenues: +low to mid teens REDUCED: now LSD-MSD
  • Gross margin to be slightly below last year’s 56.1% UNCHANGED
  • Expecting FX to impact GM most severely in Q2 & Q3 UNCHANGED
  • Expect slight Operating expense deleverage UNCHANGED
  • Expect to open 70-75 stores with equal distribution in the US and International UNCHANGED
  • Plan to close ~18 stores INCREASED: Planning 18 closures in addition to 5 in 1Q12
  • Focus on opening accessory stores, outlet stores and watch station stores UNCHANGED
  • Currently committed to 49 locations in 2012 with 21 signed leases ON TRACK: 65 lease commitments to date

 

Highlights from the Call:

 

Revenues: +10%

Fossil Brand watches +11%

Handbags +9%

  • Missed some business due to lack of spring color in watch/accessory offering

Jewelry comp'd negative due to repositioning especially in Europe

Eyewear negative resulting from pullback on distribution to US Dept stores and frames biz in Europe

 

Segment Performance

Direct to Consumer: +18% (+18.7% ex FX)

  • Comps: +8%
  • Asia Comp +18%
  • North America comp +11%
  • Europe comp (-5%) driven largely by repositioning of jewelry where Europe is the most penetrated in that business

 North America Wholesale: +9%

  • Watches: +14%
  • Men's Leather: +14%
  • Partially offset by decline in women's leather & eyewear

 Asia-Pacific Wholesale: +20% (+18.8% ex FX)

  • China drove growth +57%
  • Korea +14%
  • Japan: soft economic conditions resulted in 6% decline in shipments- significant opportunity remains to increase concessions in Japan
  • Overall concession comps (-1%) due to 6% comp decline in Korea

 Europe Wholesale: +1% (+4.7% ex FX)

  • UK: DD Growth
  • Softness in Germany and continued weakening environment in Italy & Spain

Overall Watch Business: +14% Globally

  • Fossil +11%
  • Licensed watches +20% (Michael Kors +48%, Marc by Marc Jacobs +67%, Armani Exchange +46%, Diesel +23%, Burberry +14%)

Overall Leather Business: +14.9% (+15.8% ex FX)

 

Overall Jewelry Business: (-7.1%) (-4.8% ex FX)

  • KORS added $4mm to jewelry which was offset by Fossil Jewelry decline

 Overall Eyewear Business: (-26.8%) (-25.6% ex FX)

 

Gross Margin: -40 bps

  • Principally driven by an increase in the cost of factory labor and certain watch components and a higher percentage of sales to third-party distributors
  • Foreign currency rate changes negatively impacted gross profit margin by approximately 20 basis points for the quarter
  • Partially offset by the sales mix of higher margin watch products, direct consumer sales in Asia Pacific wholesale sales in comparison with Q1 last year.

Skagen:

  • $120mm in sales in 2011
  • OM just above 17%
  • Currently 13 locations globally

Capex: $18mm in Q1

  • Expect full year Capex of $120mm

Real Estate:

  • Ended Q1 with 398 stores (190 outside North America) @ 700K square feet
  • Opened 5 in 1Q12
  • 65 lease commitments to date
  • Remain on track to opening 70-75 new stores (outlet & accessory concept, splits between US/overseas)
  • Closed 5 stores in Q1, planning additional 18 for remainder of the year
  • Targeting to end the year with ~280 concessions based on an additional 65-70 through the remainder of this year

 

Guidance:

2Q12

  • Revenues to increase 16%, +19% ex FX
  • Skagen expected to benefit sales growth by 6% in 2Q
  • 2Q EPS (including Skagen) expect to be $0.77-$0.79
  • Skagen expected to deliver $0.03 in operational earnings however costs related to the transition are expected to negatively impact EPS by $0.07
  • Stronger U.S. dollar is negatively impacting Q2 earnings by about $0.02

Full year

  • Revenues of +16%, +18% excluding FX
  • Skagen expected to contribute 5% to overall growth
  • Expect GM to be slightly below 56.1% achieved last year
  • Ex Skagen, expecting slight deleverage of operating expenses for the full year
  • Expect full year tax rate of 32% for the balance of the year
  • Diluted EPS expect to be $5.30-$5.40 (including Skagan)
  • Skagen expected to deliver $0.22 in operational activities with a $0.15 impact from transaction related costs
  • Stronger U.S. dollar is negatively impacting Q2 earnings by about $0.02 and the full year by $0.07.
  • Expect Fossil brand sales to deliver double digit growth for remainder of the year driven by new jewelry offering, strong watch & accessory momentum and expanded retail/concession store base

Miscellaneous Full year Commentary

  • Michael Kors Jewelry launch going well and expected to reach $30mm in sales this year
  • Expect more than 25% growth from Asia for the remainder of the year driven by multi-brand watch sale growth
  • Europe guidance reduced to +LSD-MSD from Low-mid teens
  • FX will have biggest impact in Q2 and Q3
  • FX will be partially offset by higher sales mix from Asia wholesale and DTC in additional to select price increases
  • Expect full year Capex of $120mm

 

 

Q&A:

 

Jewelry Repositioning:

  • Previously offered 2 Jewelry assortments (US & Europe)- now consolidating into 1 global assortment
  • Greatest impact in Europe bc European sales mix more penetrated in Jewelry vs. other segments

US Business:

  • 1Q is the smallest quarter of the year
  • Retail sales of watches and Fossil brand continue to be strong in the US
  • Expect to continue to gain US market share- still a big runway for opportunity
  • Most of the wholesale business in department stores where sell through statistics are in line with inventory- no imbalance in terms of performance at retail
  • Seeing US continue to grow at HSD rate, North America slight better given 20%-30% growth in Canada/Mexico
  • Kors does not seem to be cannibalizing in the US, just growing the business

Asia:

  • Korean concession comps -6%
  • Believe Korean operational potential to be huge long term
  • China comps +17.3%
  • Japan comps +18% (18 Fossil stores)
  • Refining Japan wholesale business
  • Transitioning Japan to be more concession based
  • Expecting Asia to increase 25% for the year with additional concessions being added in
  • Continue to see the opportunity to double the size of the business over 5-6 years

Europe:

  • Strong growth in both UK and France
  • Germany was flattish
  • Italy and Spain were down DD
  • Expect LSD-MSD growth ex Skagen for the full year in Europe
  • Have seen slight improvements in Europe in April though still 9 weeks to go
  • Still seeing weakness in Italy and Spain but Germany has recovered slightly with similar results in the rest of the countries in that market
  • Planning an increased number of store/concession openings

Inventories:

  • Missed Q1 sales expectations by $35mm which resulted in $10mm-$12mm in inventory cost at Q end
  • Component inventories +40% creating $5-$6mm in inventory addition
  • Continue to open outlet stores to clear inventory going forward
  • Skagen inventories: preparing to increase the amount of quantities to the rest of the year in both the US and internationally

JC Penney:

  • Have seen no change in strategy on that the RELIC business would be going forward
  • Expecting business as usual in that environment

Lagerfield:

  • Planning on launching first quarter 2013
  • Working on product development
  • Price points similar to Michael Kors
  • Seeing a lot of interest in Asia and Europe

Store Opening Plan:

  • Opened net just over 30 in 2011
  • Quarterly cadence expected to be similar to last year
  • Expecting a ramp in openings in the back half

Pricing:

  • Effected price increases on new and certain core items March 1st (on going)
  • Looking to bring back some opening price points in various categories

real-time alerts

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