Personal care products makers Physicians Formula Holdings Inc. cut its second-quarter and full-year guidance, citing lower retail sales due to weaker consumer spending. Shares plunged by nearly one-third Tuesday on the news.


The dermatologically focused cosmetics company expects to post a second quarter loss of 4 cents to 7 cents per share, including the after-tax costs for stock-based compensation and of a secondary equity offering in April. The company previously expected a loss 1 cent to 4 cents. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial on average forecast a loss of a 1 cent per share.


Physicians Formula also lowered net sales projections for the second quarter to between $21 million and $22 million, down from prior guidance of $24.5 million to $25.5 million.


Shares of the company, which went public in November, hit a new low on Tuesday, falling 28 percent to $11.44 as of early afternoon trading. The stock previously traded between $14.33 and $23.25. The April secondary offering of 5 million shares priced at $20.75 each enabled existing longtime backers such as Summit Partners to reduce their stake.


The company said the lower estimates reflect weaker consumer spending, a decline in purchase of promotional pre-packs from one of its top retailers and lower sales due to shift in store setups.


Physicians Formula now expects 2007 earnings per share between 58 cents and 67 cents per share on net sales of $110 million and $115 million, compared to its earlier estimate of 67 cents to 72 cents per share on net sales of $113 million to $116 million. Analysts were forecasting full year earnings of 72 cents per share on revenue of $115.2 million.

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