VF Corp. Falls After Fourth-Quarter Results Trail Estimates

VF Corp., owner of the North Face, Lee and Wrangler clothing brands, slid in early trading after fourth-quarter profit and sales trailed analysts’ estimates, hurt by the sluggish consumer demand that’s taken a toll on retailers and apparel companies.

Profit in the quarter through Jan. 2 was 95 cents a share, excluding some items, the Greensboro, North Carolina-based company said Friday in statement. Analysts projected $1.01, on average. Sales fell 4.6 percent to $3.41 billion, missing analysts’ $3.64 billion average projection.

Chief Executive Officer Eric Wiseman attributed the weaker-than-estimated performance to a "softer consumer environment, record warm weather and a strengthening U.S. dollar." Retailers ranging from discount giant Wal-Mart Stores Inc. to luxury department-store chain Nordstrom Inc. have cited similar factors for their disappointing holiday-quarter results.

VF shares fell as much as 10 percent to $55.10 in New York, the biggest intraday decline since Oct. 23. The stock already had declined 1.6 percent this year through Thursday.

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