Whole Foods earnings miss, shares collapse

Whole Foods’ fourth-quarter results just came in, and revenues and profits missed expectations.

The grocery chain popular for its organic food said it earned $US3.44 billion in sales and adjusted earnings per share of 16 cents.

The consensus estimate among analysts was for adjusted earnings per share of 34 cents on revenues of $US3.47 billion, according to Bloomberg.

Their expectation for same-store sales, which covers stores open for at least one year, was +0.7%.

Shares have fallen 39% this year, and it’s not been the most stellar 11 months.

In September, Whole Foods laid off about 1,500 workers, or 1.6% of the workforce, in a bid to lower costs for the company and for customers.

That came after inspectors from the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs found that Whole Foods was overcharging on prepackaged foods.

And then the competition keeps mounting. “The biggest concern surrounding Whole Foods is the competitive encroachment by the conventional grocery stores,” RBC Capital Markets’ William Kirk wrote in a preview to clients on Tuesday.

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