Target lowers profit outlook

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MINNEAPOLIS Target (TGT) says its first-quarter adjusted profit will likely come in slightly below its forecast because of weaker-than-expected sales of seasonal and weather-sensitive items.

The discount retailer had predicted profit of $1.10 to $1.20 per share for the February-April period, excluding one-time items. Analysts expect earnings of 96 cents per share.

Target said Tuesday that it expects revenue at stores open at least a year, a key retail metric, will be about flat for the period.

The Minneapolis company is keeping its fiscal 2013 adjusted earnings guidance of $4.85 to $5.05 per share. Wall Street expects $4.55 per share.

Target, which has 1,808 stores, expects to report its first-quarter financial results on May 22. Its stock is down 59 cents to $67.89 before the market open.

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