Kohl's net sales up but comps anemic

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis. — Kohl's Corporation came out of the post-holiday season with a strong sales performance for January — up 14.5 percent — but comps were wheezing with a 0.3 percent gain.

Comp performance for the quarter fared worse — down 2.1 percent for the 13 weeks ended Jan. 31, against a comp spurt of 11.9 percent in January 2003. For the 52-weeks period, comps slipped 1.6 percent while total sales climbed 12.7 percent.

Kohl's plans to open approximately 95 new stores in fiscal 2004, 47 stores in the first quarter that will be split between new market entries and fill-ins. New markets include Sacramento, San Diego and Fresno, California and Memphis, Tenn. The remaining new stores to be opened in existing markets will be spread across all regions of the country. The company expects to open the balance of the 95 stores in the third quarter.

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