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Big Lots raises outlook


Big Lots raised its full-year guidance even as it posted a sales decline in its first quarter.

The discounter reported net income of $1.4 million amid improving profit margins, after reporting a loss in the same period a year earlier. Gross profit margin edged up by nearly a full percentage point to 40% of sales.

Revenue fell 1% to $1.11 billion, just missing Street forecasts. Same-store sales were flat.

“We are pleased to report in a challenging retail environment the team delivered upon our financial commitments,” said David Campisi, CEO and president. “Sales were in line with our communicated guidance while EPS was above our expectations.”

Campisi said Big Lots’ core customers continues to positively respond “to our focus on ownable and winnable merchandise categories, improved merchandise presentations and more consistent in-store execution."

Big Lots raised its profit outlook for the year and now expects adjusted earnings to improve by as much as 20% over last year. The chain previously predicted an 18% gain.

Big Lots expects overall same-store sales of about 2% for the full year.

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