Ulta Beauty Issues Warning of Potential Business Slowdown, Stock Plummets

Ulta Beauty reported a slowdown in business during the first two months of its fiscal first quarter, resulting in a nearly 15% decline in intraday trading on Wednesday. CEO Dave Kimbell attributed the decline to larger and earlier than anticipated slowdown across various price points and segments within the beauty category. The company warned that if this trend continues, current-quarter comparable store sales will be at the lower end of its previous guidance, which predicted a low-single-digit percentage gain.

Kimbell expressed optimism that the pullback will ease later in the year but also acknowledged stiff competition, particularly in the prestige makeup and hair care product categories. This competition has had a direct impact on Ulta Beauty’s performance during the earlier months of the year.

As a result of this news, Ulta Beauty’s shares fell into negative territory for the year as of Wednesday afternoon, with a 14.6% decline. Estee Lauder and Bath & Body Works also experienced a drop of 4.3% and 3%, respectively, due to their own challenges caused by this competition.

By Sophia Gonzalez

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