Meme stock traders are once again showing their love for new bestie Bed Bath & Beyond.
Shares of Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY) exploded more than 30% at one point in Wednesday's session as traders digested the retailer's first quarter earnings. To be sure, there were a lot of positives for the meme traders — which sent the stock surging 40% out of the blue in a session earlier this month — to hang their hats on from Bed Bath & Beyond's latest results.
First, CEO Mark Tritton made mention of "reclaiming" lost market share. That certainly showed up in the company's same-store sales in the key categories of bedding, bath, food preparation, home decor and home organization rising 7% from the first quarter of 2019 (aka pre-pandemic numbers). Secondarily, the company's gross profit margins rose 820 basis points year-over-year on an adjusted basis as Bed Bath & Beyond sold more private label merchandise.
And lastly, the company struck an upbeat tone with its full-year outlook. Tritton raised his outlook for adjusted operating profits to $520 to $540 million from $500 million previously. The company forecasts adjusted EPS for the full year above consensus, too.
Here is how Bed Bath & Beyond performed compared to Wall Street estimates.
Net Sales: $1.95 billion vs. $1.87 billion
Adjusted Diluted EPS: $0.05 vs. $0.08
Full Year EPS Outlook: $1.40 to $1.55 vs. $1.47 estimate
Bed Bath & Beyond gave back some of the gains by early afternoon trading, with the stock last up 9% to $32.50 as of 1:00 p.m. ET. Still, the stock's ticker page was one of the most visited on the Yahoo Finance platform, according to our internal analysis.
LOS ANGELES, CA – JANUARY 28: A Bed, Bath & Beyond is photographed in Pasadena on Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021 in Los Angeles, CA. (Dania Maxwell / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
In light of the big move in Bed Bath & Beyond's stock, some analysts are voicing a bit of caution even as they acknowledge the ongoing turnaround of the retailer.
"Company initiatives are showing promise, but we're not sure 1Q results and the upwardly revised annual EPS guidance (essentially brackets current Street estimates) warrant the 30% pop in shares earlier this morning. We don't have clear conviction in market share gains, and thus remain Hold-rated as we monitor the turnaround," said Jefferies retail analyst Jonathan Matuszewski in a flash note to clients.
Matuszewski raised his price target on Bed Bath & Beyond shares to $30 from $26.
Programming note: Bed Bath & Beyond CEO Mark Tritton will be on Yahoo Finance's morning show on Thursday. The fun kicks off at 9:00 a.m. ET.
Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and anchor at Yahoo Finance. Follow Sozzi on Twitter @BrianSozzi and on LinkedIn.
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