Macy’s (NYSE:M) says sales at stores open longer than a year grew 4.6% in February as online sales continued to climb and demand kicked up for new spring arrivals.
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The metric is a key indicator of retailers’ health, as it excludes the volatility and uncertainty often associated with brand new stores. It was better than the 3.5% rise predicted by analysts in a Thomson Reuters poll.
The department-store chain reported net sales for the four weeks ended Feb. 25 of $1.86 billion, up 5.5% from $1.76 billion in the year-earlier period.
Online sales, through both macys.com and bloomingdales.com, were up 31.3% compared with a year ago.
“We saw good consumer response to our early spring deliveries in women’s apparel, and continued strong trends in accessories, shoes, cosmetics, men’s and home, which bodes well for the months ahead,” Macy’s CEO Terry Lundgren said in a statement.
The Cincinnati-based retail giant projects that same-store sales in its combined March to April period will be up about 3% to 3.5%. March sales are planned to be stronger than April, as the pre-Easter period falls earlier this year.
Those gains would add to a stronger profit from the prior quarter, which improved on sales fueled by online shoppers and strong sales during the holiday season.