) posted strong January comparable-store sales growth of 8%
(comps) that surpassed analyst expectations and improved sharply
from a decline of 4% in the comparable prior-year period, as the
company witnessed continued improvement in sales across all its
North American brands.
Comps at Gap North America increased 8% against a 5% decline
recorded in the prior-year period. Banana Republic North
America's same-store sales soared 8% versus a 6% increase in
January last year. Results at its Old Navy North America segment
reflected a whopping 12% rise in comps compared with a 6% fall in
the comparable prior-year period.
However, comps at the International business inched up 1% for
the month compared with a 10% decline recorded in the prior-year
Net sales for the five-weeks ended Feb 2, 2013 summed to $1.13
billion compared with the year-ago period (four weeks ended Jan
28, 2012) sales of $833 million.
Further, the company indicated that the sales results for
January, the fourth quarter and fiscal 2012 include an additional
53rd week, while all comps results exclude the additional week.
This Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock's performance for the fourth
quarter of fiscal 2012 also remained strong with comps increasing
5% compared to a 4% decline in the year-ago period. The comps
improvement was driven by a 4% gain at Gap North America, 3%
increase in Banana Republic North America and an 8% rise in Old
Navy North America, offset by a 2% dip in International comps.
Total sales for the fourth quarter grew 10.5% to $4.73 billion.
In fiscal 2012, the company's net sales climbed 7.6% to $15.65
billion compared with $14.55 billion in the year-ago period.
Improvements in net sales were primarily driven by 5% growth in
the company's comps.
Gap is scheduled to release its fourth quarter and fiscal 2012
results on Feb 28, 2013. The company expects to report fourth
quarter earnings of 70 cents - 71 cents. Further, the company
projects year-end inventory per store a little ahead of its
previous guidance as in-transit inventory grew resulting from the
arrival of early Easter holiday in 2013.
Concurrently, 3 other retailers -
Ross Stores Inc.
) - reported same-store sales for the month of January. Comps
growth at Ross Stores, Macy's and Nordstrom were 4%, 11.7% and
GAP INC (GPS): Free Stock Analysis Report
NORDSTROM INC (JWN): Free Stock Analysis
MACYS INC (M): Free Stock Analysis Report
ROSS STORES (ROST): Free Stock Analysis
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