LVMH flags June turnaround, but shares take a hit

LVMH, the owner of Louis Vuitton, is trying to stay positive.

The world's biggest luxury goods group has said sales momentum picked up in June.

But store closures tore a hole into second-quarter sales.

LVMH temporarily closed stores and paused manufacturing as the world imposed restrictions.

Its financial chief told a conference call "I do not think we have ever seen such a perfectly negative alignment of planets against us".

Though he also sounded a note of optimism about an upturn, particularly in China.

In fact, sales momentum improved across Asia, excluding Japan.

Comparable revenue fell by 13% versus a 32% slump in the previous three months.

But it remains exposed to travel restrictions, affecting its duty free stores in airports.

And LVMH relies heavily on tourists visiting cities such as Milan and Paris.

The conglomerate's rivals, including Gucci owner Kering and France's Hermes, which are yet to report earnings, are exposed to similar trends.

LVMH's revenues came in at 7.8 billion euros, or 9.2 billion dollars, in the April to June period, down 38% on a like-for-like basis.

Run by France's richest man, Bernard Arnault, the company was in the middle of working through a $16 billion acquisition of U.S. jeweler Tiffany.

Sources say attempts to help the deal go through have now been put on hold.

The Q2 results saw LVMH's share price fall over 4% in early session trading on Tuesday (July 28).

That dragged down the shares of rival Kering, which publishes results later in the day.

And Moncler, which makes luxury puffer jackets, also slid over 4% after reporting a first-half operating loss for the first time in its history.