Tiffany & Co. reported fourth-quarter earnings Friday that beat expectations, fueled mostly by strong international sales and product price increases.
Same-store sales — a metric closely watched for retail stocks — were unchanged for this quarter, but better than a 0.9 percent decline predicted by analysts. Tiffany also gave an upbeat outlook for 2017, though it admitted it hasn't been pleased with its recent results.
"Although Tiffany is a luxury [brand] ... we've not been pleased with our financial performance," interim Chief Executive Officer Michael Kowalski said on the earnings conference call. "While we were able to realize important improvements in gross margins and generate a healthy level of free cash flow, [U.S.] sales results were disappointing."
Sales in the company's Asia-Pacific business, which includes China and Korea, rose 9 percent to $284 million for the quarter, while sales in Japan rose 15 percent to $185 million.
Tiffany's Americas sales, though, fell 3 percent to $587 million.