Piper Jaffray Cuts Tempur-Pedic Opinion

Analyst Michael Cox cites the company's sales slowdown and growing competition

Piper Jaffray cut its investment recommendation on Tempur-Pedic International (TPX ) to market perform from outperform.

Analyst Michael Cox said that while high gas prices and low consumer confidence began to weigh on the company's discretionary spending, the magnitude of the company's sales slowdown makes it difficult to ignore growing competitive pressures in the visco-elastic marketplace. The analyst cut his $1.13 2005 earnings per share estimate to $1.03, which is below guidance as he thinks the company's third quarter 2005 forecasts could prove optimistic, as they reflect a sharp sequential sales increase in a seasonally slow period, and significant operating margin improvement in the face of continued high energy costs. The analyst cut his $1.38 2006 earnings per share estimate to $1.17, and his $28 target to $16.

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