Stage Stores Inc.
), an operator of department stores and off-price stores in the
small and mid-sized towns and communities of the United States,
recently reported improved comparable store sales (comps) and total
sales for the month of June, on the back of attractive merchandise
range and successful implementation of the sales events.
During the five week period ended June 30, 2012, Stage Stores
reported total sales of $141.0 million, representing an increase of
5.8% from $134.0 million in the comparable period last year. Comps
increased 3.3% compared with a rise of 1.8% in the prior-year
For Stage Stores, comps improved considerably across all the
categories and geographical regions in the month of June. The
categories that performed above average in the month were
cosmetics, footwear, home & gifts and men's products.
Geographically, the Northeast, South Central, which includes Texas
and the Southwest regions, registered a rise in comps.
Year-to-date, company's total sales increased 6.5% to $637.0
million from $598.0 million in the prior-year period, whereas comps
rose 3.8% for the same period.
For the month of May, Stage Stores recorded an increase of 8.0%
in comps, and total sales came in at $130.0 million, reflecting an
increase of 11.1% year over year. On an average, for the second
quarter to date, comps increased 5.5% versus 0.9% in the comparable
prior-year period, whereas total sales jumped 8.0% year over year
to $271.0 million.
Stage Stores continued to expand its store count in the month of
June by opening 3 new Steele's stores in Pampa and Sulphur Springs
in Texas and Leesville in LA. The company opened about 6 new
department stores and 9 new Steele's stores, while it also added 7
Estee Lauder and 7 Clinique counter in the first-quarter of 2012.
Additionally, the company witnessed strong upside in its e-commerce
The company's net sales for the first-quarter of 2012 came in at
$365.7 million, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $362.0
million and increasing 5.5% year over year. Comparable store sales
were up 2.5%, while merchandise margins expanded 55 basis points
during the quarter.
Stage Stores, which competes with
), ended the month of June with 832 retail outlets across 40
states. Based on stellar first-quarter 2012 results and solid comps
performance, the company carries a Zacks #1 Rank, which implies a
short-term Strong Buy rating for the next 1-3 months. This
correlates with our long-term Outperform recommendation on the
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