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Nordstrom hit by department store doldrums


Nordstrom joined Macy's this week in blaming weak traffic for its disappointing same store sales as the Seattle-based chain also lowered its full-year guidance.

Nordstrom Inc. said that for the third quarter ended Oct. 31 same store sales increased .9%. It posted earnings of 57 cents per share on $3.33 billion in revenue. And net sales increased 6.6 percent.

"Third quarter performance was below company expectations, reflecting softer sales trends that were generally consistent across channels and merchandise categories," the company said in a statement. "The company is executing its customer strategy through multiple growth initiatives to enhance the customer experience and reach more customers."

On Oct. 1, the company sold its credit card portfolio to TD Bank U.S.A. for $2.2 billion.

One bright spot in the third quarter was the company's Nordstrom Rewards loyalty program. which continues to contribute to overall results, with members shopping more frequently and spending more on average than non-members. The company opened approximately 260,000 new accounts in the third quarter. With 4.6 million active members, sales from members increased 8 percent in the third quarter and represented 38% of sales.

During the third quarter, the company opened three new full-line stores, including its first international flagship store in Vancouver, B.C., relocated a full-line store and opened 16 new Rack stores.

Looking ahead to the fourth quarter, the company now expects a same store sale increase of 2.5% to 3% and net earnings of $3.40 to $3.50.

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