TJX t.j. maxx, marshalls

TJX Cos. Inc.’s third-quarter net profits slipped, before adjustments, but the offprice giant continued to gain share with a sales increase of 6.9 percent.

And the retailer is growing more optimistic about the near future, raising its forecast for the full year.

TJX’s third-quarter earnings fell 6.4 percent to $549.8 million, or 83 cents a diluted share, from $587.3 million, or 86 cents, a year earlier.

Adjusted earnings per share tallied 91 cents, topping the 87 cents analysts projected.

Sales for the three months ended Oct. 29 increased to $8.29 billion from $7.75 billion. The company’s comparable store sales rose 5 percent, with Marmaxx, the U.S. division that houses Marshalls and T.J. Maxx, in line with the company average as the U.S. HomeGoods business comped up 6 percent and TJX Canada jumped 8 percent. TJX’s European and Australian unit lagged with flat comps.

Ernie Herrman, chief executive officer, said the company had “strong momentum in customer traffic and sales” and was “gaining consumer market share.”

“Again this quarter, our comp store sales growth was primarily driven by customer traffic,” Herrman said. “We have numerous initiatives underway to drive customers to our stores this holiday selling season and keep them coming back. We will be offering consumers eclectic gift selections from around the world, all at exciting values, and shipping fresh assortments to our stores right through December and beyond. We remain laser focused on achieving our goals for 2016 and are passionate about surpassing them.”

He reiterated that the company was, over the long term, on its way to annual sales of over $40 billion. This year, analysts expect the firm to post sales of roughly $33 billion.

TJX projected adjust earnings for the year of $3.46 to $3.48, up from the $3.39 to $3.43 previously forecast.

The company has 3,785 stores in nine countries, including the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, Poland, Austria, the Netherlands, and Australia, and three e-commerce sites and for years has been eating it the business of full-price retailers by offering national brands at discounted rates.

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