), the operator of general merchandise and food discount stores
in the United States, registered a 1% decline in comparable store
sales (comps) for November 2012, reflecting a decrease in
comparable-store transactions. Moreover, sales were below an
escalation of 1.8% marked in November 2011.
The company witnessed soft sales during the first two weeks of
the month, while sales picked up later in the month. Alongside,
the company registered weak sales in the Northeast region which
was affected by Superstorm Sandy. However, sales remained strong
in the south.
Category wise, Target reported solid sales in Food, with
health and beauty increasing in the low single-digit. The company
stated that sales in home and apparel category decreased in the
low single-digit, while hardlines witnessed a decline in the mid
Year-to-date, Target's sales augmented 3.8% to $55.8 billion,
while same-store sales increased 3.2%.
Minneapolis, Minnesota-based Target Corporation announced that
net retail sales for November inched down 0.1% to $6,183 million
from $6,191 million reported in the year-ago period.
In general, the November sales data of retailers remained
largely affected by the storm as most of the retailers witnessed
soft sales during the month. Comps results for retailers such as
) witnessed a downfall of 0.7%, 1.1% and 5.6%, respectively.
Going forward, Target's efficient marketing, multi-channel
strategy, innovative product offering, compelling pricing
strategy and new merchandise assortments are expected to drive
comparable store sales and operating margins over the long
We expect the company to gain market share, and believe that
the focus on consumable items should boost sales. The company
expects low single-digit increase in December comparable store
Currently, we prefer to have a long-term 'Neutral'
recommendation on the stock. Moreover, Target holds a Zacks #3
Rank, which translates into a short-term 'Hold' rating.
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