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Jones postpones debt offering

BY CSA STAFF

New York City Jones Apparel Group said late Thursday that it is postponing a $250 million debt offering due to “unfavorable” market conditions.

The apparel firm did not say when it will return to the market with the notes.

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Big Lots quarterly comps up 6%

BY CSA STAFF

COLUMBUS, Ohio Big Lots reported first-quarter retail sales increased 8.1% to $1.22 billion, compared with $1.13 billion for the first quarter of fiscal 2009. Comparable-store sales increased 6% for the first quarter of fiscal 2010.

Commenting on sales for the quarter, Steve Fishman, chairman, CEO, and president stated, “I am very pleased with our first quarter comp of 6% and the continued momentum we are seeing in our business.  We delivered better quality merchandise at extreme values and the improvement in consumer discretionary spending trends, first recognized in the fall of 2009, continued through the first quarter of 2010.  By offering a merchandising assortment that is highly discretionary in nature, we believe our business is uniquely positioned to benefit from an improving economy.”

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A&P quarterly loss widens

BY CSA STAFF

MONTVALE, N.J. The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. reported that sales for the fourth quarter were $2 billion versus $2.3 billion in last year’s fourth quarter. Comparable-store sales decreased 4.8% during the comparable 12-week period.

A&P reported a net loss from continuing operations of $158 million which includes charges of $65 million for goodwill, trademark and long-lived asset impairment and income of $16 million for mark to market adjustments related to financial liabilities. Loss from continuing operations in last year’s fourth quarter totaled $84 million, and included income of $3 million for mark to market adjustments related to financial liabilities.

Ron Marshall, president and CEO, The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co., said, “The past year was certainly a challenge, as the economy continued its sluggish pace. The good news is that we have identified several critical issues within our organization that will lead us back to market prominence. We are committing our undivided attention to clarifying our brand identity in our principal banners, completing the integration of the Pathmark acquisition and maximizing supply chain cost improvement opportunities.”

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