Stein Mart stumbles in third quarter
December 1, 2003,
A whopping rise in expenses combined with declining sales to bring a poor third quarter to Stein Mart Inc.
Stein Mart's third-quarter net loss was $10.4 million, as compared with a 2002 third-quarter net loss of $3.8 million. The chain's operating loss was $19.6 million in the third quarter, compared with an $8.6 million operating loss the year before.
What hurt the chain's numbers in the third quarter was a staggering 480-basis point increase in its selling, general and administrative expenses as a percentage of sales, which finished the quarter at 29.5 percent. On a dollar basis, SG&A rose 13.2 percent, to $93.2 million.
Stein Mart closed eight stores in the third quarter as part of a program to eliminate 16 underperforming stores in 2003. The 3Q loss from operations from these stores was $9.7 million; $20.5 million for the year-to-date.
"Our third-quarter results were hurt by eliminating full-price coupons and closing eight stores," said Stein Mart's president and chief executive officer, Mike Fisher. "However, without the store-closing impact, we would have incurred a loss of 11 cents per share for the quarter and shown a slight operating profit year to date."
The chain's third-quarter sales were slightly more than $315.9 million, compared with $332.8 million in sales in last year's third quarter.
Stein Mart Inc.
|Qtr. 11/1 (x000)||2003||2002||% chg|
|Earnings per share||-0.25||-0.09||—|
|Average gross margin||23.3%||22.1%||—|
|Nine months||2003||2002||% chg|
|Earnings per share||-0.28||0.25||—|
|Average gross margin||24.0%||24.8%||—|