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Macy’s, J.C. Penney and Kohl’s beat November forecasts

New York City -- Department store retailers enjoyed a strong November, with nearly all the leading chains topping analysts  projections.

Macy’s reported Thursday that its same-store sales rose 6.1% in November, boosted by a strong Black Friday weekend. The company raised its earnings guidance.

Macy’s said its sales were boosted by a strong Black Friday weekend, and strong online sales. Online sales (macys.com and bloomingdales.com combined) were up 31.8% in November, and 28.9% in 2010 year-to-date, compared with the same periods in 2009. (Online sales are included in the same-store sales calculation for Macy's.)

“We are clearly seeing the results of our omnichannel strategies to integrate stores and online so that we can serve customers no matter how they prefer to shop,” said Terry J. Lundgren, chairman, president CEO of Macy’s. “On Black Friday alone, more than 4.5 million shoppers visited macys.com and bloomingdales.com, with a similarly high level of record traffic on Cyber Monday (Nov. 29).

J.C. Penney Co. said that its November same-store sales rose 9.2%. Analysts, on average, had expected same-store sales to rise 3.1%, according to Thomson Reuters.

J.C. Penney said all divisions and regions experienced comparable-store sales growth in November, with shoes and men’s apparel reporting the best results over last year. Geographically, the best performing regions were the central and southwest regions.

At Kohl’s, same-store sales rose 6.1% in November, beating estimates forecasts of a 2.8% increase. Year-to-date, same-store sales rose 4.7%, while total sales rose nearly 8% to $14.37 billion.

The Southeast and South-Central regions outperformed the company, Kohl’s said, and the chain’s footwear business once again reported the strongest comparable store sales for the month.

In other November same-store sales results:

* Saks reported a 5.3% gain, falling far short of analysts' expectations for a 9.4% increase.
* Bon-Ton Stores’ reported a 2.9% increase; and
* At Dillard’s, sales were up 8%, topping expectations.

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