LOS ANGELES – Severe weather in February is being blamed for higher-than-expected labor costs, and as a result California Pizza Kitchens (CPKI) is lowering its first quarter earnings estimates, according to a company news release."urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
The casual dining chain said staffing its restaurants was difficult during severe weather in February, and the cost of labor as a percentage of sales increased dramatically.
California Pizza Kitchens operates 130 restaurants in 25 states and four foreign countries.
The chain's earning expectations were lowered to 20 cents to 22 cents a share, down two cents from the company's earlier estimate.
A current Thomson First Call estimate puts California Pizza's first-quarter earnings at 23 cents a share, compared with year-ago earnings of 29 cents.
Revenue now is expected to grow 17 percent to 18 percent for the quarter, putting first-quarter revenue at $82.1 million to $82.8 million, below Wall Street's $84.6 million estimate.