Lowe’s 2Q Profit Drops 7.9%
Mooresville, N.C. Lowe’s Cos. Inc. reported a 7.9% decline in second-quarter profit on Monday as the company benefited from tight expense controls and the government stimulus package.
Lowe’s earned $938 million in the three months ended Aug. 1, down from $1.02 billion in the year-ago period. It said sales increased 2.4% to $14.5 billion from $14.17 billion a year ago.
“Our sales results for the quarter, while better than our forecast, reflect the realities of the continuing macro-economic pressures on our industry,” said Robert A. Niblock, chairman and CEO, in a statement.
Niblock added that Lowe’s experienced “relative” strength in seasonal sales as homeowners restored lawns and did outdoor landscaping following the effects of last year’s drought in much of the country. He also said the company benefited from the economic impact of the fiscal stimulus checks.
However, Niblock added that weakness in bigger ticket items continues, particularly in markets hurt most by the housing downturn.
JCPenney reports 2Q loss
PLANO, Texas JCPenney reported earnings per share from continuing operations of 52 cents for the second quarter ended Aug. 2, compared to 78 cents in last year’s second quarter. Net income for the quarter decreased 35.7% to $117 million.
“In this difficult consumer environment, we have continued to focus on tightly controlling all aspects of our business, and our second quarter results show the benefits of our approach. Our ability to protect our bottom line through rigorous expense control and effective inventory management was enhanced by good initial customer response to our new brand launches and the effectiveness of our promotional pricing actions,” said Myron Ullman, chairman and ceo of JCPenney.
For the third quarter, the company is expecting comparable-store sales decrease in the mid-single digits. Earnings per share are expected to be between 70 cents and 75 cents.
Washington state grocers to offer wine/beer tastings
OLYMPIA, Washington The Washington State Liquor Control Board has launched a yearlong pilot program that will allow wine and beer tasting in 30 grocery stores in the state. Participating stores, which include seven Safeway and five Fred Meyer/QFC stores, will be permitted to hold 12 tastings on premises during the period between Oct. 1 and Sept. 30, 2009.
The Washington State Liquor Control Board said it will document the findings, including comments and complaints about the pilot and then submit a report to the state legislature on Dec. 1, 2009.