Sharper Image's Stock Takes Hit Following Sales Report

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Sharper Image Corp.'s stock fell more than 18 percent yesterday following an announcement that sales leading up to Christmas were weaker than expected.


"Overall, our sales this holiday were disappointing," the San Francisco-based company's founder/CEO Richard Thalheimer said in a statement that was released Monday morning before the markets opened.


The company's shares were priced at $23.14 when the market closed on Dec. 23. Yesterday morning, Sharper Image opened at $19.45, but by the end of the day the price sank to just under $19.


Shaper Image's sales for the period Dec. 1-24, excluding wholesale, increased about 4 percent. The company had been predicting an increase in sales of between 15 percent and 18 percent for the fourth quarter. Also, comparable-store sales were in line with the company's earlier prediction of a mid-single-digit decline.


Thalheimer mentioned lighter store traffic during the 10 days before Christmas, soft Internet sales and a lower-than-expected response to the company's holiday catalogs and direct-response advertising as some of the reasons for the company's sluggish performance during the holiday season.


Chantal Todé covers catalog news for DM News.com. To keep up with the latest catalog news subscribe to our free e-mail newsletter DM News Daily by visiting www.dmnews.com/newsletters


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