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TJX, Ross Update Guidance on Heels of Strong April Comps

NEW YORK - After reporting comparable store sales that were "well ahead of expectation" in April, Ross Stores and TJX Cos. have both updated their respective guidances for the coming periods.
     Based on its above-plan sales "as well as favorable margin trends for the first quarter," Ross' vice chairman and ceo Michael Balmuth said the Pleasanton, Calif.-based chain is now estimating earnings per share for the 13 weeks ended April 28 to be 92 cents to 93 cents, up from our prior guidance of 89 cents to 91 cents.
     "This updated range represents a projected 24% to 26% increase on top of a 28% gain in last year's first quarter," he noted, adding that Ross will provide detailed sales and earnings guidance for the second quarter with its first quarter earnings release and conference call on May 17.
     Also thanks to its above-plan sales and "strong flow-through to the bottom line," Framingham, Mass.-based TJX now expects its first-quarter earnings per share to be approximately 54 cents and full year fiscal 2013 EPS to be in the range of $2.26 to $2.36, "both of which are above our recently raised guidance and up substantially over last year," said ceo Carol Meyrowitz. "We remain extremely well-positioned to take advantage of buying opportunities in the marketplace and offer consumers ever-changing, compelling selections at excellent values."

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