JCPenney net sales drop 4.3 percent in Q1

For the first quarter ended May 5, 2018, total net sales at J. C. Penney Company, Inc. (JCPenney) decreased 4.3 percent to 2.58 billion dollars compared to 2.70 billion dollars for the first quarter ended April 29, 2017. The company said, decline in total net sales was primarily the result of the 141 stores that closed in the second and third quarters of fiscal 2017. Comparable sales increased 0.2 percent for the first quarter.

Commenting on the first quarter trading, Marvin R. Ellison, JCPenney’s Chairman and CEO said in a media statement: "During the first quarter, we achieved a positive sales comp of 0.2 percent, which was impacted in large part by a very late start to spring where we experienced cooler than normal temperatures in April. Although our overall top line sales results came in below our expectations for the quarter, we were encouraged by the strong positive comp performance throughout February and March, as well as the last two weeks of April, when temperatures began to normalize."

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Review of JCPenney’s product segments’ performance

Jewellery, Sephora, men's and salon, JCPenney said, were the company's top performing divisions and categories during the quarter. Geographically, the Gulf Coast and Southeast were the best performing regions of the country.

Cost of goods sold, which excludes depreciation and amortization, was 1.71 billion dollars or 66.3 percent of sales, compared to 1.73 billion dollars or 63.9 percent of sales in the same period last year driven by increased online clearance selling and continued growth in the mix of the company's online business, markdown and pricing actions taken in the quarter to clear slow-moving seasonal inventory and ongoing growth in major appliances.

For the first quarter, the company's net loss was 78 million dollars or 0.25 dollar per share, compared to 187 million dollars or 0.60 dollar per share in the same period last year. Adjusted net loss was 69 million dollars or 0.22 dollar per share compared to adjusted net income of 2 million dollars or 0.01 dollar per share, for the first quarter last year.

The company has revised its 2018 full year guidance, which reflects only the impact of the adoption of new revenue recognition and pension accounting standards. Comparable store sales are expected to remain at 0.0 percent to 2 percent; and adjusted earnings per share are now expected to be negative 0.07 dollar to 0.13 dollar.



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