- Prachi Singh |
Ross Stores, Inc. said in a statement that earnings per share for the 13 weeks ended February 2, 2019 were 1.20 dollars versus 1.19 dollars in the 14 weeks ended February 3, 2018, while net earnings totalled 442 million dollars compared to 451 million dollars in the 14 weeks ended February 3, 2018. For the 52 weeks, earnings per share grew to 4.26 dollars compared to 3.55 dollars in the 53 weeks ended February 3, 2018, while net earnings were 1.6 billion dollars compared to 1.4 billion dollars in the 53 weeks ended February 3, 2018.
Commenting on the company’s fourth quarter and full year results, Barbara Rentler, the company’s CEO said: “Sales and earnings for both the fourth quarter and fiscal year outperformed our expectations. We achieved these results despite our own challenging multi-year comparisons and weakness in our ladies apparel business during the holiday season.”
Ross Stores’ Q4 and FY18 comparable sales increase 4 percent
Sales for the fourth quarter were 4.1 billion dollars, with comparable store sales up 4 percent over the same period ended February 3, 2018. This increase, the company said, was on top of a 5 percent gain in last year’s fourth quarter. Sales for the full year grew 6 percent to 15 billion dollars, with comparable store sales up 4 percent above a 4 percent gain in fiscal 2017.
The company’s board approved an increase in the quarterly cash dividend to 255 cents per share, up 13 percent over the prior year, payable on March 29, 2019 to stockholders of record as of March 18, 2019.
For the 52 weeks ending February 1, 2020, the company expects the same store sales to grow 1 percent to 2 percent on top of 4 percent gains in each of the past four years. The company also plans to open about 100 new stores this year, consisting of approximately 75 Ross Dress for Less and 25 Dd’s Discounts locations. Fiscal 2019 earnings per share are projected to be 4.30 dollars to 4.50 dollars, up from 4.26 dollars for the 52 weeks ended February 2, 2019.
Given the recent underperformance in ladies apparel, Ross Stores is forecasting comparable store sales for the 13 weeks ending May 4, 2019 to be flat to up 2 percent and earnings per share to be 1.05 dollars to 1.11 dollars versus 1.11 dollars for the first quarter ended May 5, 2018.