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Havertys Reports Earnings for Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2016

ATLANTA, Feb. 21, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- HAVERTYS (NYSE:HVT) (NYSE:HVT.A) reports earnings for the quarter ended December 31, 2016 of $0.51 per share compared to $0.41 per share for the same period of 2015.  The earnings per share for the full year 2016 were $1.30 compared to $1.22 per share for 2015.

Clarence H. Smith, chairman, president and CEO, said, “We are pleased with our strong finish to the quarter.  Gaining greater productivity from our existing store base is a primary focus and average ticket increased over its prior year comparable period for the ninth consecutive quarter.  Generating store and site visits remains challenging and expensive for retailers as methods for reaching the consumer continue to change and fragment.  The Havertys brand merchandise, pricing discipline, and tight control of inventory were factors in our gross profit margin expansion.

“The payment of the $21.0 million special dividend in the fourth quarter and $21.3 million in share repurchases during the year reflect our commitment to provide returns to our shareholders and manage our capital as we work to improve operating margins within our current distribution network.

“We remain confident in our ability to serve the on-trend furniture customer and grow our business, despite challenges in the current economic and political climate.”

Financial Highlights

Fourth Quarter 2016 Compared to Fourth Quarter 2015

  • As previously reported, net sales increased 2.2% to $220.6 million.  On a comparable store basis, sales rose 2.5%.  Total written sales increased 5.3% and written comparable store sales rose 5.2% over the same period last year.
  • Average written ticket was up 2.6% and custom upholstery written business rose 1.9%.   
  • Gross profit margin increased 100 basis points to 54.9%.  There was a $0.8 million decrease in the LIFO reserve in 2016 versus a $0.2 million increase in 2015, a positive change of $1.0 million or 44 basis points. 
  • Selling, general and administrative costs as a percent of sales increased 50 basis points to 47.3% from 46.8%. Fixed and discretionary expenses increased $1.5 million.  We incurred additional administrative costs of $1.8 million largely from compensation expense and $0.6 million of increased operating insurance claims costs. New locations and improvements also generated increases in depreciation of $0.7 million which was partially offset by $0.4 million in lower rent costs.  Advertising expense was also $0.5 million lower in 2016. Variable expenses were 18.2% as a percent of sales in 2016 compared to 17.8% in 2015 as sales from our in-home design program increased 27.4% and delivery costs increased 20 basis points.
  • Other income includes a $0.9 million gain from the insurance recovery related to the destruction by a storm of our Lubbock, Texas location at the end of 2015 and a $0.7 million gain from the sale of a former retail location.
  • We paid $21.0 million in a special dividend of $1.00 to holders of common stock and $0.95 to holders of Class A common stock. 
  • A dedicated clearance center in Atlanta, Georgia, was opened in mid-December.

Twelve Months ended December 31, 2016 Compared to Same Period of 2015

  • As previously reported, net sales totaled $821.6 million, compared with $804.9 million in 2015, representing an increase of 2.1%.  Comparable store sales increased 2.1%.
  • Average written ticket was up 2.3% and custom upholstery written business rose 4.0%.
  • Gross profit margin increased 50 basis points to 54.0% from 53.5%.  Our LIFO inventory valuation method generated a $1.9 million positive impact in 2016.
  • Selling, general and administrative costs increased 80 basis points to 48.6% from 47.8%. Fixed and discretionary expenses increased $9.0 million to $249.9 million.  We had $6.1 million in additional administrative costs primarily from greater benefits and compensation expense, $3.1 million of which related to increases in medical benefit costs. Depreciation and other occupancy costs from new stores and improvements increased expenses $3.3 million.  Variable expenses as a percent of sales were 18.2% in 2016 versus 17.9% in 2015 as our in-home design business grew and due to higher delivery costs.
  • Other income includes a $3.3 million gain from the insurance recovery related to the destruction by a storm of our Lubbock, Texas location at the end of 2015 and a $0.7 million gain from the sale of a former retail location. 
  • We returned to stockholders via stock repurchases and dividends $51.7 million in 2016 and $22.1 million in 2015.
  • Our retail store count increased to 124, with a net 3 new stores in 2016 as we opened a temporary location to serve Lubbock, Texas, opened two stores, each in a new market, closed a store in Florida, and opened a clearance center in the Atlanta market.

Expectations and Other

  • Total written sales for the past eight weeks, including our full New Year’s weekend sales event, are 3.5% higher than the same period last year and written comparable store sales are up 1.9%.
  • Total delivered sales for the first quarter to date are 5.0% lower than the same day of week last year and comparable store sales are 6.7% less.  The Presidents’ Day sales event ended yesterday, a week later than in 2016.  On average we deliver merchandise to customers within two to four weeks after a holiday sales event and should routinely make up this delivered sales differential versus last year.
  • Our gross profit margin for the full year of 2017 is expected to be 53.6% compared to 54.0% in 2016.  The reduction is primarily due to the impact of the estimated increase to the LIFO reserve.  First half gross profit margin is projected to be 20 basis points higher than the average for 2017, with the second half running approximately 20 basis points lower.
  • Fixed and discretionary type expenses within SG&A are expected to be approximately $260.0 million for 2017, up $10.1 million or 4.0% over those same costs in 2016.  The increase is largely due to an expanded advertising budget, higher occupancy costs from new and relocated stores, and inflation.  Fixed and discretionary type expenses in total should average $64.0 million per quarter in the first half of 2017 and $66.0 million per quarter in the second half.  For 2016, these expenses averaged $61.2 million per quarter in the first half and $63.7 million in the second half.  Variable SG&A expenses for 2017 are anticipated to be at a 18.1% rate, somewhat higher in the first half and lower in the second half due to efficiencies from the typical higher volume in the third and fourth quarters.  Other non-SG&A costs, net of credit revenues, are expected to be $1.0 million for the year.
  • Our effective tax rate for 2017 is expected to be in the 38.4% to 38.5% range.
  • Planned capital expenditures for 2017 are $26.9 million.  Our current 2017 plans include opening one store in a new market, two relocations, one store closure and starting on the expansion of our western distribution center.  These changes will increase selling square footage approximately 0.3% and our store count is planned to remain at 124.
(In thousands, except per share data – Unaudited)

/EIN News/ --

    Three Months Ended
December 31,
  Year Ended
December 31,
    2016   2015   2016   2015  
Net sales    $ 220,595    $ 215,886    $ 821,571    $ 804,870  
Cost of goods sold     99,575     99,681     378,234     374,094  
  Gross profit     121,020     116,205     443,337     430,776  
Credit service charges     56     73     229     286  
    Gross profit and other revenue     121,076     116,278     443,566     431,062  
  Selling, general and administrative     104,427     101,034     399,236     384,801  
  Provision for doubtful accounts     97     147     383     314  
  Other income, net     (1,308 )   (671 )   (4,107 )   (1,617 )
    Total expenses     103,216     100,510     395,512     383,498  
Income before interest and income taxes     17,860     15,768     48,054     47,564  
Interest expense, net     513     675     2,233     2,289  
Income before income taxes     17,347     15,093     45,821     45,275  
Income tax expense     6,400     5,912     17,465     17,486  
    Net income    $ 10,947    $ 9,181    $ 28,356    $ 27,789  
Other comprehensive income, net of tax:                          
 Defined benefit pension plan adjustments:    $ 51    $ 55    $ 108     230  
    Comprehensive income    $ 10,998    $ 9,236    $ 28,464   $ 28,019  
Basic earnings per share:                          
  Common Stock    $ 0.52    $ 0.42    $ 1.32    $ 1.24  
  Class A Common Stock    $ 0.50    $ 0.40    $ 1.27    $ 1.18  
Diluted earnings per share:                          
  Common Stock    $ 0.51    $ 0.41    $ 1.30    $ 1.22  
  Class A Common Stock    $ 0.51    $ 0.39    $ 1.27    $ 1.17  
Basic weighted average shares outstanding:                          
  Common Stock     19,127     20,109     19,492     20,430  
  Class A Common Stock     1,977     2,045     2,014     2,067  
Diluted weighted average shares outstanding:                          
  Common Stock     21,476     22,473     21,506     22.798  
  Class A Common Stock     1,977     2,045     2,014     2,067  
Cash dividends per share:                          
  Common Stock    $ 1.1200    $ 0.100    $ 1.440    $ 0.36  
  Class A Common Stock    $ 1.0625    $ 0.095    $ 1.365    $ 0.34  

(In thousands - Unaudited)

  December 31,  
  2016     2015  
Current assets            
  Cash and cash equivalents  $ 63,481    $ 70,659  
  Investments       12,725  
  Restricted cash and cash equivalents   8,034     8,005  
  Accounts receivable   4,244     5,948  
  Inventories   102,020     108,896  
  Prepaid expenses   8,836     6,137  
  Other current assets   7,500     6,341  
    Total current assets   194,115     218,711  
Accounts receivable, long-term   462     655  
Property and equipment   233,667     229,283  
Deferred income tax   18,376     17,245  
Other assets   7,885     5,357  
    Total assets  $ 454,505    $ 471,251  
Current liabilities            
  Accounts payable  $ 25,662    $ 27,815  
  Customer deposits   24,923     21,036  
  Accrued liabilities   41,904     42,060  
  Current portion of lease obligations   3,461     3,051  
    Total current liabilities   95,950     93,962  
Lease obligations, less current portion   52,013     50,074  
Other liabilities   24,671     25,476  
    Total liabilities   172,634     169,512  
Stockholders’ equity   281,871     301,739  
    Total liabilities and stockholders’ equity  $ 454,505    $ 471,251  

(In thousands – Unaudited)

    Year Ended December 31,  
    2016   2015  
Cash Flows from Operating Activities:              
  Net income   $ 28,356   $ 27,789  
  Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash
 provided by operating activities:
    Depreciation and amortization     29,045     25,756  
    Gain on insurance recovery     (3,338 )    
    Proceeds from insurance recovery received for business
 interruption and destroyed inventory

    Stock-based compensation expense     3,872     4,033  
    Excess tax benefit from stock-based plans     (80 )   (397 )
    Deferred income taxes     (1,120 )   (3,019 )
    Provision for doubtful accounts     383     314  
    Other     (400 )   (160 )
  Changes in operating assets and liabilities:              
    Accounts receivable     1,514     960  
    Inventories     6,876     (2,305 )
    Customer deposits     3,887     (2,650 )
    Other assets and liabilities     (9,508 )   (590 )
    Accounts payable and accrued liabilities     (2,032 )   2,501  
      Net cash provided by operating activities     60,054     52,232  
Cash Flows from Investing Activities:              
  Capital expenditures     (29,838 )   (27,143 )
  Maturities of certificates of deposit     12,725     7,250  
  Purchase of commercial paper and certificates of deposit         (9,975 )
  Proceeds from insurance for destroyed property and equipment     3,011      
  Restricted cash and cash equivalents     (29 )   12  
  Other investing activities     944     1,501  
      Net cash used in investing activities     (13,187 )   (28,355 )
Cash Flows from Financing Activities:              
  Construction allowance receipts     1,574     6,701  
  Payments on lease obligations     (3,125 )   (2,534 )
  Excess tax benefit from stock-based plans     80     397  
  Dividend paid     (30,409 )   (8,060 )
  Common stock repurchased and retired     (21,282 )   (14,002 )
  Taxes on vested restricted shares     (883 )   (1,201 )
      Net cash used in financing activities     (54,045 )   (18,699 )
(Decrease) increase in cash and cash equivalents     (7,178 )   5,178  
Cash and cash equivalents at beginning of year     70,659     65,481  
Cash and cash equivalents at end of year   $ 63,481   $ 70,659  

SG&A Expense Classification

We classify our SG&A expenses as either variable or fixed and discretionary.  Our variable expenses are comprised of selling and delivery costs.  Selling expenses are primarily compensation and related benefits for our commission based sales associates, the discount we pay for third party financing of customer sales and transaction fees for credit card usage.  We do not outsource delivery so these costs include personnel, fuel, and other expenses related to this function.  Fixed and discretionary expenses are comprised of rent, depreciation and amortization and other occupancy costs for stores, warehouses and offices, and all advertising and administrative costs.

Conference Call Information

The company invites interested parties to listen to the live audiocast of the conference call on February 22 at 10:00 a.m. ET at its website, under the investor relations section. If you can not listen live, a replay will be available on the day of the conference call at the website or via telephone at approximately 1:00 p.m. ET through March 1. The number to access the telephone playback is 1-888-203-1112 (access code: 3952498).

About Havertys

Havertys (NYSE:HVT) (NYSE:HVT.A), established in 1885, is a full-service home furnishings retailer with 124 showrooms in 16 states in the Southern and Midwestern regions providing its customers with a wide selection of quality merchandise in middle to upper-middle price ranges.  Additional information is available on the company’s website,

Safe Harbor

This press release includes statements that constitute forward-looking statement within the meaning of the federal securities laws.  Generally, the words "believe," "expect," "intend," "estimate," "anticipate," "project," "will" and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements, which are not historical in nature. We intend for all forward-looking statements contained herein or on our website, and all subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements attributable to us or persons acting on our behalf, to be covered by the safe harbor provisions for forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and the provisions of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (which Sections were adopted as part of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995). Forward-looking statements may relate to, for example, future operations, financial condition, economic performance (including gross profit margins and expenses), capital expenditures, and demand for our products.  The Company cautions that its forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, and while we believe that our expectations for the future are reasonable in view of currently available information, you are cautioned not to place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements.  Actual results or events may differ materially from those indicated as a result of various important factors.  Such factors may include, among other things, the state of the economy; state of the residential construction and housing markets; the consumer spending environment for big ticket items; effects of competition; management of relationships with our suppliers and vendors and disruptions in their operations; new regulations or taxation plans, as well as other risks and uncertainties discussed in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K and from time to time in the Company's filings with the SEC.

Havertys 404-443-2900
Dennis L. Fink
   EVP & CFO
Jenny Hill Parker
   SVP, finance, secretary and treasurer

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