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Shares of Foot Locker, Inc. (FL - Snapshot Report) touched a new 52-week high of $41.12 on Dec 20, 2013 and eventually closed trade at $41.11. The stock gained momentum from the company’s better-than-expected third-quarter fiscal 2013 results. This apparel-footwear and accessories retailer amassed a year-to-date return of roughly 33.1%.

The company currently trades at a forward P/E of 14.74x, an 11% discount to the peer group average of 16.57x. The last traded price is 4.9% below the Zacks Consensus average analyst price target of $43.22. Additionally, the company’s long-term estimated earnings per share growth rate is 9.5%.

Investors are betting on this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock that recently became an official partner of the National Basketball Association in Canada by entering into a multi-year marketing partnership.

Further, Foot Locker’s history of positive earnings surprises keep investors optimistic about its future performance. We observe that the company has beaten the Zacks Consensus Estimate in the past 7 quarters by an average of 5.2%. In the last reported quarter it delivered a positive surprise of 1.5%.

The company posted third-quarter earnings of 68 cents a share that came a penny ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate and rose 7.9% year over year. Driven by solid comparable-store sales performance, Foot Locker’s sales for the quarter rose 6.4% year over year to $1,622 million and handily surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1,586 million.  

The year-over-year bottom-line growth was primarily driven by strong top-line performance, effective cost management and lower share count.

Foot Locker’s expansion strategy is also impressive. The company opened 28 stores and remodeled/relocated 118 stores, while it shut 13 stores during the third quarter. Foot Locker operated approximately 3,500 stores across 23 countries in North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. Apart from this, the company has 45 franchised Foot Locker stores in the Middle East and South Africa. Moreover, in Germany and Switzerland, Foot Locker has 27 franchised Runners Point and Sidestep stores.

Apart from Foot Locker, other stocks such as Brown Shoe Co. Inc. (BWS - Snapshot Report), The Walt Disney Company (DIS - Analyst Report) and V.F. Corporation (VFC - Analyst Report) achieved new 52-week highs of $27.72, $73.56 and $245.79, respectively, yesterday.

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