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Macy’s quarterly sales, profit surge

Macy’s Inc., saying it had its most successful second quarter in more than a decade, reported a surge in profit and sales and raised its full-year outlook.

The department store giant Wednesday reported profit of $241 million, or 55 cents a share, compared with $147 million, or 35 cents, in the same quarter last year.

Sales totaled $5.94 billion, up 7.3% from sales of $5.54 billion in the second quarter of 2010. Sales at stores open at least a year, known as same-store sales, increased 6.4%. Online sales were up 40.2% year-over-year.

The parent of the Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s chains has benefited lately from tailoring merchandise to local markets — smaller clothing sizes in Westminster, for example, to serve the area’s Vietnamese shoppers who tend to be more petite — and from stocking more exclusive brands.

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Profit, sales, operating income and cash flow all exceeded expectations for the quarter that ended July 30, the company said.

“All of our key strategies are working — and working in unison — to help us better understand our customers; deliver the assortments and value they want and expect; and engage them in stores, online and via mobile devices,” said Chief Executive Terry J. Lundgren.

Still, he noted that the Cincinnati-based company was closely monitoring developments in the sluggish economy and financial markets. “We are cautious but optimistic about this fall and are staying focused on those factors we can control,” he said.

The strongest merchandise categories in the second quarter were jewelry, watches, fashion accessories, cosmetics, fragrances, men’s and home, the company said in a call with analysts.

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Macy’s raised its full-year guidance to $2.60 to $2.65 a share, up from a previous guidance of $2.40 to $2.45. It said it now expects same-store sales for the fiscal year to rise 4.8% to 5.1%; at the beginning of the year, the company projected that 2011 same-store sales would increase about 3%.

Shares of Macy’s fell 92 cents, or 3.6%, to $24.52 on Wednesday.

andrea.chang@latimes.com


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