Hurricanes Can't Stop Stein Mart
November 28, 2005-- Home Textiles Today,
Despite losing almost $6 million in sales to a pair of hurricanes that damaged and shut many of its stores, Stein Mart Inc. parlayed strict inventory controls and stronger margins into a $1.4 million third quarter profit, recovering from a year-before loss of $2 million.
Sales increased 1.8 percent, to $336.5 million from $330.4 million, and would have climbed higher but for store closings and business disrupted by Hurricanes Katrina and Wilma. The retailer estimated about $5.7 million in sales was lost due to stores that were closed for at least one day. Held in check by storms, same-store sales edged up 0.4 percent.
Providing a lift to the bottom line, average gross margin widened 1.6 percentage points, to 24.7 percent from 23.1 percent helped by improved mark-up and fewer markdowns, the company said. Merchandise stockpiles were cut 2.9 percent from year-ago levels, to $313.3 million from $322.7 million, yielding a savings of $9.3 million.
“We are pleased to have produced a profit in the third quarter, despite eight weeks of punishing hurricane activity that preoccupied communities and customers,” said Michael Fisher, CEO.
Storms had a major impact on business, the retailer said, closing stores in at least seven states over the course of eight weeks. “Several areas were threatened and/or struck more than once, and while only a few Stein Mart stores were structurally damaged, issues with power, infrastructure and evacuated associates curtailed business significantly,” the retailer said.
Stein Mart Inc.
|Qtr. 10/29 (x000)||2005||2004||% change|
a-Third quarter results include $3.7 million in miscellaneous income, up 13.8 percent from $3.3 million during the same period a year ago; and an income-tax benefit of $856,000, compared with a year-before tax payment of $1.2 million.
b-Nine month results include $11.3 million in miscellaneous income, compared with $10.5 million last year; and an income tax benefit of $18.3 million, compared with a year-before tax benefit of $9.4 million. The prior-year nine months included an after-tax $145,000 loss from discontinued operations.
|Oper. income (EBIT)||(2,006)||(6,680)||--|
|Per share (diluted)||0.03||(0.05)||--|
|Average gross margin||24.7%||23.1%||--|
|Oper. income (EBIT)||35,470||14,044||152.6|
|Per share (diluted)||0.67||0.36||86.1|
|Average gross margin||27.6%||25.5%||--|
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