Ascena Retail Group Inc (NASDAQ:ASNA) Earnings Beat Sends Shares Higher in Pre Market

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Ascena Retail Group Inc (NASDAQ:ASNA) reported better than expected first quarter numbers after-hours yesterday. The New Jersey-based company reported a loss this last quarter of $18.1 million, or approximately $0.10 per share. This is compared to a $0.32 per share profit reported in last year’s fiscal first quarter. Excluding items, however, their adjusted EPS came in at $0.36.

“On the operating front, we were pleased with first quarter earnings, which exceeded our expectations,” David Jaffe, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ascena Retail Group, inc., said, “We saw strong sales performance at maurices and Lane Bryant, and significant gross margin rate recovery at Justice, Ann Taylor and LOFT. We continue to execute well against controllable factors, and believe we have compelling product and the appropriate level and mix of inventory to maximize our holiday opportunity.”

The company now expects their full-year earnings to come in at around $0.75 to $0.80 per share.

The stock closed at $11.78 during the last trading session. It is down 21.20% since April 29, 2015 and is downtrending. It has underperformed the S&P500 by 21.00%.

The institutional sentiment increased to 1.67 in Q2 2015. It’s up 0.68, from 0.99 in 2015Q1. The ratio is positive, as 28 funds sold all their Ascena Retail Group Inc shares they owned while 55 reduced their positions. 49 funds bought stakes while 90 increased their total positions. Institutions now own 143.40 million shares which is 16.61% more than the previous share count of 122.97 million in 2015Q1.

Stadium Capital Management Llc holds 26.27% of its total portfolio in Ascena Retail Group Inc, equating to 5.36 million shares. Greenwood Investments Inc. owns 1.31 million shares representing 20.89% of their total US portfolio. Moreover, Coliseum Capital Management Llc has 13.62% of their total portfolio invested in the company, equating to 2.41 million shares. The California-based Pco Investment Management Lp has a total of 3.29% of their portfolio invested in the stock. Private Capital Management Llc, a Florida-based fund reported 1.63 million shares owned.

Since March 11, 2015, the stock had 0 insider buys, and 2 selling transactions for a total of $17,938 in net activity. Giammatteo Robert sold 405 shares worth $5,295. Pershing John E sold 967 shares worth $12,643.

Ascena Retail Group, Inc. is a national specialty retailer offering clothing, shoes and accessories for missy and plus-size women through its 100% owned subsidiaries, under the Lane Bryant, maurices, dressbarn and Catherines brands; and for tween girls and boys, under the Justice brand. The company has a market cap of $2.31 billion. The Firm operates approximately 3,900 stores throughout the United States and Canada. It currently has negative earnings.

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