Markdowns, home furnishings slump hurt Dillards  

Little Rock, Ark. – Major markdown activity led to Dillard’sreporting a second-quarter net loss of $25.2 million -- compared to net income of $15.7 million for the same period one year ago.

 Gross margins declined 190 basis points, as the 329-unit department store chain said “lackluster sales during the quarter necessitated higher markdown activity in order to maintain acceptable inventory levels.” Comp store inventory as of Aug. 4 was thus trimmed by 4% from its year-ago level.

This tough stance came as sales fell 2% to $1.65 billion, and comps declined by 3%.

Home was one of three categories noted for declining “significantly more than trend” during the quarter.

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