Gap Inc (NYSE:GPS) announced March sales on April 9. Although Gap stated that net sales increased 1% from the same period a year prior, only Old Navy posted a positive sales increase. Old Navy’s sales increased 14%, while Gap’s and Banana Republic’s sales decreased 7% and 3%, respectively.
Gap noted that sales were bolstered because Easter was earlier than last year, but this will likely negatively impact April sales. The sales report did not include updates on Athleta, INTERMIX, and Piperlime; Gap’s other brands.
Most investors turned bearish on the stock following the sales update.
On April 10, analyst Ike Boruchow of Sterne Agee reiterated a Hold rating on the retailer. He noted that although Gap posted an increase in comparable sales for March, the figures were “somewhat disappointing given the benefit of the Easter shift.” Although Old Navy’s performance was “very strong,” Boruchow believes it was “mostly offset by sharp declines” at Gap and Banana Republic. He concluded, “With the reversal of the Easter shift likely to weigh on April and fundamentals at the Gap brand remaining challenged, we remain fairly cautious on this stock.”
Ike Boruchow has a 78% overall success rate recommending stocks with a +16.4% average return per recommendation.
Separately on April 10, analyst Paul Lejuez of Wells Fargo reiterated a Market Perform on Gap. Lejuez noted, “While GPS did not quantify the impact of the Easter shift, we believe it likely benefited March comps by 500-700bps, with 400-500bps at Gap brand… 800-1,000bps at [Old Navy], and by 100-200bps at Banana. Therefore, we expect the negative impact on April comps to be 800bps.” He added that Average Unit Retail and Units per Transaction were all up, but traffic was flat.
Paul Lejuez has a 66% overall success rate recommending stocks with a +18.2% average return per rating.
On average, the top analyst consensus for Gap on TipRanks is Hold.