American Eagle is surging after a big earnings beat

American Eagle shares rose by more than 7% in pre-market trading after the company reported first quarter results, with a huge leap in earnings.

The clothing and accessories retailer posted earnings per diluted share of $US0.15, up from $US0.02 in the prior year quarter and better than expectations for earnings of $US0.12, according to Bloomberg.

Sales came in at $US700 million, up 8% year-over-year, and beating estimates for $US691.5 million.

Sales at stores open for more than a year rose 7%, compared to a 10% drop in the same quarter last year.

“Our strong first quarter results reflected outstanding merchandise and customer-focused execution,” said Interim CEO Jay Schottenstein in the earnings release. “Both AE and aerie performed well, achieving higher sales and earnings, proving successful in a price promotional retail climate.”

The stock, which closed at $US15.74 a share on Tuesday, is up 13% year-to-date and 33% over the past 12 months.

Other retailers including Urban Outfitters, Macy’s and JCPenney posted earnings below analyst expectations this past quarter.

In an earnings preview, B.Riley’s Jeff Van Sinderen wrote that the company is poised to have a better year than its peers.

“With ARO (Aeropostale) potentially needing to close a substantial number of stores (losing considerable market share) and ANF (Abercrombie & Fitch) plagued with problems, AEO (American Eagle) has risen to a leading position among the ‘3 A’s,’ he wrote .

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