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Invest in Tiffany

Tiffany & Co. has raised its earnings forecast and the stock rose three percent. Is this enough reason to invest in Tiffany? According to the online Financial Times Tiffany lifts it guidance for the second time in a few months.

Tiffany & Co has raised its profit forecast for the second time in less than six months, after sparkling second-quarter sales in the Americas and Asia Pacific boosted the US luxury jeweler’s earnings by 16 per cent.

Same store sales went up in North America, China and Australia. Sales fell in Japan and Europe. It would appear that countries that are leading the way out of the global recession have a greater appetite for luxury goods. Tiffany credits its growth in sales to both changes in brand positioning and putting more effort into growth markets. Good for Tiffany. But, should you invest in Tiffany or has the stock already done all that it can?
Tiffany & Co.

According to Google Finance, NYSE:TIF,

Tiffany & Co. (Tiffany) is a holding company that operates through its subsidiary companies. The Company operates in five segments: Americas, Asia-Pacific, Japan, Europe and other. The Company’s principal product category is jewelry, which represented 92% of worldwide net sales during the fiscal year ended January 31, 2014 (fiscal 2013). The Company offers a selection of TIFFANY & CO. brand jewelry. The Company also sells timepieces, leather goods, sterling silver goods (other than jewelry), china, crystal, stationery, fragrances and accessories, which represented, in total, 7% of worldwide net sales in 2013. The Company operates e-commerce enabled Websites in 13 countries. The Company produces jewelry in New York, Rhode Island and Kentucky, and silver hollowware in New Jersey.

The Tiffany name is recognized throughout the world and has been for well over a century. As noted on the World of Tiffany page on their web site,

Since 1837 the masterpieces of Tiffany & Co. have defined style and celebrated the world’s great love stories.

A famous investor once noted that investors often look for good management when buying a stock. His preference was a brand name so strong that even incompetent management could not screw things up. Tiffany is one of those brand names with world-wide recognition. But, does this mean that you should invest in Tiffany instead of buying a piece of jewelry from them for your spouse?

Tiffany Stock Performance

Tiffany stock has gone up from $80 a share to over $100 a share in the last twelve months. The stock was selling for $32 a share at the beginning of 2009, down from $54 a share before most recent market crash. Adjusted for splits (4) the stock sold for $1.80 a share in the late 1980s. And Tiffany has paid quarterly dividends virtually without fail for more than a quarter of a century. Its current quarterly dividend is $0.36. This is a nice history and gives credit to anyone who bought the stock in the late 1980s but how about if you invest in Tiffany now? Tiffany sells luxury jewelry. It has a strong brand and sells well in growing economies. If you believe that the recession will continue to improve across the globe, including in Japan and Europe you probably want to invest in Tiffany.

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