Boston, MA 08/21/2114 (wallstreetpr) – A chain of departmental and off-price store operator Stage Stores Inc (NYSE:SSI) expects that it would be in a position to deliver comparable store sales of flat to up 2% during the second half of the current fiscal year. For the first half, the company suffered a drop of 2.2% in its comparable store sales. Therefore, even if the company achieves its targeted upper-end growth, the comparable store sales for the full fiscal year may likely be in the negative territory.
The company President and Chief Executive Officer, Michael Glazer, said that it was looking for improved results during the second half of the current fiscal year in view of its sales initiatives and the holiday season.
The CEO said that the recent second quarter was a challenging one and that the sales witnessed improved trends towards the end of the quarter. He said that the company could manage its merchandise margins and also inventory well. He expressed his happiness on its performance during the back-to-school season and cosmetics that produced another quarter of robust results.
In spite of the confidence expressed by Glazer, it had reduced its earnings and revenue forecast for the current fiscal year.
Stage Stores Inc (NYSE:SSI) expects to generate sales of $1.61 – $1.625 billion for the current fiscal year 2014, which was short of the Wall Street analysts’ consensus estimation of $1.65 billion. The company also projects earnings of $1.05 – $1.15 a share for the same period. This is sharply lower than the Street analysts’ expectations of $1.22 a share. Earlier, the company had estimated sales of $1.64 – $1.67 billion and earnings of $1.25 – $1.35 a share.
The Stage Stores Inc (NYSE:SSI) reported net income of $11.19 million for the second quarter, up from $9.61 million and earnings raised to 35 cents a share from 29 cents a share in the prior year quarter. Stage Stores net sales dipped to $377.45 million from $389.99 million in the previous year quarter. Its comparable store sales dropped 4.2% over the last year quarter.
However, the Stage Stores Inc (NYSE:SSI)’s gross margin improved by ten basis points while selling, general and administrative expenses as a percentage of sales recorded 30 basis points improvement.