July 23, 2024

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Nike stock sinks after company projects larger sales decline than expected in 2025

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Nike (NKE) stock fell almost 14% on Friday in early pre-market trading after the retailer said it expects revenue to decline more than previously thought in the coming year.

The company said Thursday it expects revenue to fall mid-single digits in 2025, including an expected 10% decline in the first quarter. Nike had initially guided for overall sales growth in 2025.

The guidance reflects a continuing trend from Nike’s fiscal 2024 fourth quarter, which the shoemaker reported after the closing bell on Thursday. The company said quarterly revenue in the fourth quarter fell 2% from the year prior to $12.61 billion, below Wall Street’s estimates for $12.86 billion. Meanwhile, Nike’s $0.99 earnings per share exceeded analysts’ expectations of $0.66. Nike’s direct-to-consumer sales declined 8% from the same quarter a year ago to $5.1 billion.

“Fiscal [2025] will be a transition year for our business,” Nike CEO John Donahoe said during the company’s earnings call.

The company has been trying to reignite sales growth in what has been a lackluster year for the stock so far. Morningstar equity analyst David Swartz told Yahoo Finance the sales number was “pretty weak” and was the main concern from the release.

Nike’s gross margins increased to 44.7% in the fourth quarter, up from 43.6% in the same period a year ago, but came in below analyst expectations of 45.3%.

The company’s stock entered the release down more than 17% over the last year, a far cry from the S&P 500’s (^GSPC) 26% gain, as investors grew wary of slowing growth at the retailer.

“All in, this longtime industry bellwether continues to surprisingly struggle, and we believe that investor patience with management is getting thinner by the day,” Wedbush senior vice president of equity research Tom Nikic wrote in a note following the earnings release. “Over the long run, NKE has been one of the most successful growth stories in our coverage, and we keep waiting for the brand to regain its mojo. But it looks like we’re going to have to keep waiting longer.”

Wall Street has been closely watching Nike’s product pipeline as the Oregon-based company works to fend off competition in its core athletic footwear market from rivals like Adidas (ADDYY) and relative upstarts like On (ONON) and Deckers’ (DECK) Hoka brand.

Nike executives stressed they believe their plans to scale new products are on “track” and will be impacting the company’s financials by the end of the year.

“We are planning for meaningful, sequential improvement in the second half versus the first half, and it starts with the confidence that we have around the new products that we’re bringing to market,” Nike CFO Matthew Friend said on the earnings call.

Boston, MA - June 25: Toronto Blue Jays 1B Vladimir Gurrero Jr. sports red and white Nike shoes. (Photo by Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)Boston, MA - June 25: Toronto Blue Jays 1B Vladimir Gurrero Jr. sports red and white Nike shoes. (Photo by Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Will innovation boost Nike’s stock? Toronto Blue Jays 1B Vladimir Gurrero Jr.’s red and white Nike shoes. (Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images) (Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Josh Schafer is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow him on X @_joshschafer.

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