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L Brands halves dividends, shares fall

(Reuters) – L Brands Inc. ( LB.N ) on Monday slashed its dividend by half and named a new CEO…

(Reuters) – L Brands Inc. ( LB.N ) on Monday slashed its dividend by half and named a new CEO of Victoria’s Secret Underwear brand, the clothing retailer’s shares shrank down 6 percent in expanded trade.

A customer is shipped by a L Brands Inc., Victoria Secret Store in Manhattan, New York, USA, May 1

3, 2016. REUTERS / Brendan McDermid

The company reported better than expected third quarter earnings, lowering its annual regular dividend to $ 1.20 from $ 2.40.

L Brands was appointed John Mehas as CEO of Victoria’s Secret, replacing Jan Singer.

Mehas joins Victoria Secret from the Lifestyle brand Tory Burch and has previously worked with Polo Ralph Lauren’s Club Monaco, Gap and Bloomingdales.

L Brands said sales at the established stores increased by 4 percent in the quarter on November 3, according to analysts’ average estimate of 1.53 percent, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Bath and Body Works, which produces smells and body care products, reported an increase of 13 percent in the same store, outperforming estimates of 8.3 percent.

Sales at Victoria Secret Stores that have been open for at least one year decreased 2 percent, but were better than the analyst’s average estimate of a 4 percent decline.

The company also increased its profit forecast for the full year 2018 to $ 2.80 to $ 2.80 per share, from $ 2.45 to $ 2.70, the first increase after falling over the previous two quarters.

Excluding goods, L Brands received 16 cents per share, 1 cents over Wall Street estimates.

Net sales increased by 6 percent to $ 2.77 billion, including top valuations.

The company reported a net loss of $ 42.8 million, or 16 cents per share, compared with a profit of $ 86 million, or 30 cents a share, a year earlier.

The loss was mainly due to taxes of $ 101.2 million related due to an already planned plan to close Henri Bendel and some Victoria Secret Stores.

Reporting of Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru; Editing Maju Samuel

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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