NEW YORK — Calling it the best third quarter in its history, Nordstrom Inc. reported a 49.6 percent earnings climb Wednesday.
Citing expense controls, strength in women’s apparel and fewer markdowns, Nordstrom said profits for the period came to $38.1 million, or 46 cents a share, from $25.5 million, or 31 cents, a year ago.
In the quarter, which ended Oct. 31, sales advanced 12 percent to $862 million from $769.4 million.
John Goesling, executive vice president, who said in a statement that this was Nordstrom’s best third quarter ever, added, “The sales trends we experienced during the first six months have continued, boosted by the success of our new store openings.”
Thomas Tashjian, an analyst at First Manhattan, said the earnings were better than he had projected, with strong gross margin improvement. He said sales growth was fueled by new stores and a same-store sales gain of 6.7 percent.
Looking ahead, Tashjian said the Seattle-based company is in a strong position for the holiday season and that improvements in the California economy will also help. Tashjian projected per-share earnings of 90 cents for the fourth quarter, against 74 cents. For the year, he is projecting $2.52 against $1.71.
In the nine months, earnings jumped 67.6 percent to $133.1 million, or $1.62, from $79.4 million, or 97 cents. Sales were up 8.9 percent to $2.7 billion from $2.5 billion. Same-store sales were up 5.6 percent.
— Fairchild News Service

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