New York City Discount chains posted strong performances in March, as an early Easter, warmer weather and pent-up demand brought shoppers out. A slight rise in consumer confidence also helped.
Target Corp. said its same-store sales rose 10.3% in March, better than analysts had expected, with strong growth in clothing sales. The company said it expects its first-quarter earnings to beat analyst estimates because of the large March sales gains.
For the month, Target’s total sales rose 12.5% to $6.23 billion.
"March comparable-store sales exceeded our expectations, driven by particular strength in our apparel business," said Gregg Steinhafel, Target's chief executive, in a statement.
At The TJX Cos., same-store rose 12% in March, well ahead of the 6.5% rise analysts had expected. The company raised its guidance the first-quarter of fiscal 2011.
Total sales for the five-week period ended April 3 were up 19% to $2.0 billion.
“I am particularly pleased as these results were achieved against year-over-year comparisons that were more challenging than most other retailers faced,” stated Carol Meyrowitz, president and CEO, TJX Cos. “Our continued acceleration of traffic, which we believe punctuates our belief that consumers will remain focused on value even as the economy improves, along with our great brands and great fashions, drove this strong performance.”
Costco Wholesale Corp. said its same-store sales rose 10% in March, buoyed by strong growth overseas. The warehouse club operator said its international same-store sales grew 28% with U.S. results up 5%. Total monthly sales climbed 12% to $7.14 billion.