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TJX brings home strong October

TJX's home concepts turned in strong performances during the month of October, according to the company.

Comps at the 109-unit HomeGoods chain climbed 12 percent, ahead of plan, said vp of investor and public relations Sherry Lang last week in recorded comments about the results. "While HomeGoods' sales were slower to pick up than our apparel-based concepts after the September attacks, they have achieved a good deal of momentum as seasonal shopping for the home goes into full swing," she said.

HomeGoods' third quarter comps were up 7 percent.

In Canada, sales at the fledgling HomeSense chain — which opened its seventh unit last month — continue to outpace plan, Lang said.

Within the MarMaxx Group — the umbrella for the 681-unit T.J. Maxx chain and the 573-unit Marshalls chain — home outperformed apparel on a comp basis, Lang said. Overall comps for the division were above plan with a 4 percent gain, with home comps up 6 percent and apparel up 3 percent.

Since September, sales have been driven by "a very aggressive stance on pricing" and the pursuit of a rapid markdown strategy, a formula Lang acknowledged "came at some expense to our margins." She added that the strategy now is to sustain the sales momentum into the holiday season.

Average per store inventories, including warehouses, were down 10 percent, she added.

TJX's overall consolidated sales for the month were $885 million, up 12 percent.

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