JCPenney tops holiday sales targets

Sales at stores open for more than a year fell 7%

J.C. Penney Co. on Thursday reported a smaller-than-expected fall in quarterly comparable sales, buoyed by demand for women's apparel.

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Sales at stores open for more than a year fell 7% in the fourth quarter ended Feb. 1, compared with expectations of a 7.3% slide, according to data from IBES Refinitiv.

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Net income fell to $27 million, or 8 cents per share, from $75 million, or 24 cents per share, a year earlier, mainly due to the company's restructuring initiatives and a gain in the year-ago quarter.