Home still finding its way back at Target

Heath E. Combs, Retail Editor 5, November 16, 2011

Minneapolis - Target Corp.'s home sales were slower for the third quarter of 2011 compared to a year ago, but the company saw some encouraging movement in the department.

Comps in home strengthened in each quarter this year, said Kathy Tesija, exec vp of merchandise, during the company's quarterly conference call this morning.

"There were encouraging trends in bedding following a September reset," she added. She offered no further details.

However, future results are expected to be uneven due to the housing market, high unemployment and economic uncertainty, the company noted.

Tesjia called the quick-hit Missoni program in September a great success, though it crashed the company's website. The launch generated more traffic "than any Black Friday or Cyber Monday," she said.

Target's Q3 net earnings rose 3.7% to $555 million, or 82 cents per share, beating analysts' expectations by 8 cents per share.

Sales increased 5.4% to $16.1 billion, with comps up 4.3%.

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