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Stein Mart growing same store sales, footprint


Off-price retailer Stein Mart is poised for expansion as stronger traffic in the holiday quarter helped the company post an increase in same store sales.

Stein Mart posted an 11% increase in fourth quarter adjusted operating income. Net income for the quarter surged 65.8% to $12.3 million or 27 cents per diluted share, up from $7.4 million or 16 cents a share a year ago. For the year, it rose slightly, to $26.9 million from $25.5 million, with earnings per share climbing from 57 cents to 59 cents.The company also reported that net sales grew 7.3% in the fourth quarter, with a 5.6% increase in same stores sales.The company had revenue of $387 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.86 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.29 earnings per share.

We were delighted with our strong finish to 2014 which included a two percent increase in traffic in the fourth quarter. Our solid second half sales performance, with a 23 percent increase in adjusted operating income was a great recovery from the first half which was negatively influenced by severe weather," said Jay Stein, Chief Executive Officer. "Gross profit margin continues to be near our historically highest levels which, when combined with increasing sales, leverages our ongoing operating expenses and should result in strong future cash flows."

Stein Mart said it expects profits to be relatively flat in 2015. The company plans to open 11 new stores, close two stores and relocate one store in 2015.

Stein Mart operates approximately 264 stores in 29 states.

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