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Dillard’s well-positioned for holidays


A third quarter same store sales decline of 1% at Dillard’s wasn’t enough to dissuade CEO William Dillard, II, from declaring the company is very well positioned for the holidays.

Total merchandise sales also declined 1% to $1.42 billion while net incomes increased to $55.2 million, or $1.30 a share, compared to $50.9 million, or $1.13 a share. The third quarter earnings per share benefited from a one time gain of $3.8 million, or nine cents a share, related to the sale of a store location.

“Returning cash to shareholders was a high priority during the quarter, and we completed the remaining $224.5 million of share repurchase authorization,” Dillard said. “Although comparable sales declined 1%, we were pleased with a 69 basis point merchandise gross margin improvement, with our inventory control and with our strong operating cash flow. We believe we are positioned very well for the holiday season, and we look forward to providing premium Dillard’s service to our customers.”

The company said its sales trends were strongest in juniors’ and children’s apparel followed by men’s apparel and accessories. Sales were weakest in the home and furniture category. Sales trends were strongest in the central region, followed by the eastern and western regions, respectively.

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