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Cato ups Q3 guidance following better-than-expected September sales


Following September sales that were above its guidance, Cato Corporation is increasing its third-quarter guidance.

The company reported sales of $79.7 million for the five weeks ended Oct. 4, a 9% increase over sales of $72.9 million for the five weeks ended Oct. 5, 2013. Same-store sales for the five-week period increased 5% from the prior year.

Sales for the 35 weeks ended Oct. 4 were $669.5 million, up 7% from the same period last year. The company's year-to-date same-store sales increased 4% from the prior year.

"September same-store sales were above our guidance and also above our current trend," said John Cato, chairman, president and CEO. "We now expect third quarter earnings per diluted share will be at the higher end of our guidance range of $.08 to $.13 versus $.17 last year."

During the month, the company opened two new stores in Myrtle Beach, South Caroline, and in Floresville, Texas, respectively. As of Oct. 4, Cato operated 1,336 stores in 32 states, compared to 1,312 stores in 32 states as of Oct. 5, 2013.

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