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Crocs Shares Plummet on Slashed Outlook

Shoe maker Crocs slashed its first-quarter and full-year earnings and sales outlooks on Monday, citing fewer retail orders and costs from a Canadian factory closure, sending its shares down 27 percent.

On Monday, its shares closed at $17.79, down 16 cents, on the Nasdaq. In after-hours trade, shares were down 27 percent to $13.

As of Monday's Nasdaq closing, Crocs shares have lost more than half their value since Jan. 1, as investors fretted over the company's 2008 growth prospects.

The fast-growing company, which warned of challenges in the U.S. marketplace, said it now expects a first-quarter loss of up to 5 cents to zero earnings per share, down from an earlier forecast of earnings of 46 cents per share.

"Retailers in general are planning more cautiously, and therefore, we did not experience the level of at once business we originally expected," said Chief Executive Ron Snyder in a statement, calling the U.S. retail environment "increasingly challenging."

Analysts, on average, had been expecting the company to post earnings of 45 cents per share, according to Reuters Estimates.

Revenue in the quarter is now expected to range between $195 million and $200 million from an earlier outlook of $225 million, and below the $223.3 million expected by Wall Street, on average.

To save costs, Crocs decided to shutter its Canadian manufacturing operations to consolidate production at its lower cost company-owned and third-party facilities.

Those charges amount to about 13 cents per share in the first quarter.

For fiscal 2008, earnings per share are expected to range between $1.54 to $1.64 per share, including closure costs, below the $2.70 previously forecast.

Wall Street, on average, had been expecting earnings of $2.64 per share.

Revenue for the full year is now expected to rise between 15 percent and 20 percent over 2007. Crocs previously said it expected revenue of $1.16 billion, representing growth of 37 percent.