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Rue21 Q3 profit rises 22%

BY Staff Writer

Warrendale, Pa. — Rue21 Inc. reported Wednesday that its third-quarter profit surged 22% to $8.7 million, from $7.1 million a year earlier, as the apparel retailer opened dozens of new stores during the period.

Revenue climbed 19% to $194.8 million, but missed Wall Street’s expected $197.3 million in revenue. The company opened 30 stores during the quarter and expanded eight into its "Rue21 etc!" format.

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First Data Black Friday report: Charged purchases increased 6.3% over last year

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Atlanta — A report released Thursday by First Data Corp., which tracks same-store consumer spending via credit, signature debit, PIN debit and EBT cards at U.S. merchant locations, found that dollar volume for the Thursday-Friday shopping period grew 6.3% over last year, and transaction growth was 7.3%.

The First Data SpendTrend analysis showed that Electronic/Appliances, Clothing and Accessory Stores, and NonStore Retailers were some of the merchant categories that saw a boost in dollar volume growth this year.

Cyber Monday continued the spending trend of the Thanksgiving weekend, with e-commerce year-over-year dollar volume growth of nearly 20%.

Aggressive promotions resulted in lower average ticket values. Overall year-over-year average ticket growth was 0.7%, while average ticket growth at Retailers declined 0.9%. Significant discounting at Electronic/Appliances stores and General Merchandise Stores (including Value Retail) were the main contributors to the lower average ticket growth within the Retail category.

Non-Retail discretionary merchants did quite well also, according to the report. Food Service/Drinking Places (including Restaurants and Quick Service Restaurants) dollar volume growth was 11.7%, versus 9.6% last year.

“The holiday spending season is off to a good solid start. Consumers definitely responded to the early openings and discount prices on Black Friday.” said Silvio Tavares, senior VP and division manager of First Data Global Information and Analytics Solutions, which publishes SpendTrend. “We continued to see strong momentum through Cyber Monday.”

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Zumiez profit increases 15% in Q3

BY Staff Writer

Everett, Wash. — Zumiez Inc. reported Thursday that net income for the quarter ended Oct. 29 rose 14.8% to $14.1 million, from $12.3 million in the prior fiscal year.

Revenue climbed 13.3% to $154 million from $135.9 million, and same-store sales grew 6%.

“We are pleased with the current pace of growth for our business and believe our product assortment has us well positioned for the remainder of the holiday selling period," said Rick Brooks, CEO.

The company has opened all 45 new stores planned in fiscal 2011, including its first stores in Canada.

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