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Target trims forecast as quarterly sales fall short

Daniel Acker | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Target on Thursday reported comparable sales rose a smaller than expected 0.9 percent in the third quarter, blaming what it called "constrained" consumer spending, and it lowered its full-year profit forecast.

Target, which competes against Wal-Mart Stores and other discount retailers, earned $341 million, or 54 cents per share, in the fiscal third quarter ended Nov. 2, down from $637 million, or 96 cents per share, a year earlier. On an adjusted basis, the discounter earned 84 cents per share.

(Read more: Wal-Mart upsthe ante on Black Friday yet again)

Analysts were expecting comparable sales to rise 1.3 percent.

The retailer now expects to earn an adjusted profit per share of $4.59 to $4.69, compared with an earlier range of $4.70 to $4.90.

After the earnings announcement, the retail giant's shares fell in pre-market trading. (Click here for the latest quote.)

(Read more: JC Penney's $1.97 pants could spoil Christmas)

By Reuters

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