January 31, 2019 / 7:14 AM / in 3 months

H&M Q4 pretax profit lags consensus, keeps dividend unchanged

STOCKHOLM, Jan 31 (Reuters) - Swedish fashion retailer H&M reported on Thursday an unexpected fall in fiscal fourth-quarter pretax profit, hit by lingering costs to upgrade its logistics systems, but kept its annual dividend payout unchanged.

Pretax profit in September through November shrank to 4.35 billion crowns ($482 million) from a year-ago 4.87 billion, against a mean forecast in a Reuters poll of analysts for an increase to 5.09 billion.

H&M proposed an unchanged dividend of 9.75 crowns per share for 2018. Several analysts had forecast the retailer would lower its annual payout with the poll showing a mean forecast of 8.95 crowns per share.

$1 = 9.0221 Swedish crowns Reporting by Anna Ringstrom; editing by Niklas Pollard

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