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Shoe Carnival has disappointing Q3

BY Dan Berthiaume

Evansville, Ind. – Shoe Carnival had a generally disappointing third quarter fiscal 2013, with net income falling 11% to $10.9 million from $12.2 million. Net sales also declined 3.5%, from $244.4 million to $235.8 million.

Shoe Carnival attributed part of the year-over-year decline to a shift from a 53-week to a 52-week fiscal year, which resulted in one fewer week of back-to-school shopping activity in the third quarter and about $21.2 million less in sales.

“The arrival of October’s seasonably cool weather and an end to the federal government shutdown was a welcomed relief in the third quarter,” said Cliff Sifford, president and CEO of Shoe Carnival. “October’s mid-single digit comparable store sales gain, together with August’s sales performance, more than offset our negative September sales trend. Higher merchandise margins coupled with lower expenses than were originally projected resulted in earnings at the high-end of our expectations.”

The company opened eight new stores during the third quarter of fiscal 2013 as compared to six stores in the third quarter of fiscal 2012. Shoe Carnival expects fourth quarter net sales to be in the range of $215 miilion to $219 million with a comparable store sales increase in the range of 4% to 6%.

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Gordman’s Stores reports lower net income

BY Dan Berthiaume

Omaha, Neb. – Gordman’s Stores reported declining net income even as net income grew in the third quarter of fiscal 2013. Net income for the third quarter of fiscal 2013 was $1.1 million, down 72.5% from net income of $4 million in the third quarter of the prior year.

Meanwhile, net sales grew 5.8% to $151.3 million from $143.1 million. A same-store sales decrease of 6.1%, as well as an increase in sales, general and administrative costs, may have negatively impacted net income. During the quarter, Gordman’s opened three new stores in two new markets and one existing market.

For the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2013, the company currently expects net sales to be between $204 and $206 million, which reflects a mid-single digit same-store sales decrease. For the fiscal year 2013, the company expects net sales to be between $623 million and $625 million, which reflect a mid-single digit same-store sales decrease.

"Third quarter net sales in total were in line with expectations, driven by the 10 new stores that we opened throughout the first nine months of the year,” said Jeff Gordman, president and CEO. “While same-store sales for the third quarter were below expectations, trends improved in October, with same-store sales even with that of a year ago. This improvement was primarily attributable to the initiatives we put into place in the first nine months of the year, including the implementation of our marketing and merchandising strategies as well as the rollout of our loyalty program. Moreover, we were aggressive with our markdown cadence during the quarter in our ongoing efforts to position our inventory levels ahead of the critical holiday selling season."

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Starbucks prices $750 million of senior notes

BY Dan Berthiaume

Seattle – Starbucks has priced an underwritten public offering of senior notes. The company plans to use the net proceeds from the offering of $400 million of 0.875% senior notes due 2016 and $350 million of 2.000% senior notes due 2018 to fund a portion of the payment required by the previously announced arbitration award in the Kraft litigation matter.

The remaining net proceeds from this offering will be used for general corporate purposes, which may include business expansion, payment of cash dividends on Starbucks common stock, the repurchase of common stock under the company’s ongoing share repurchase program, or financing of possible acquisitions. The offering of the notes is expected to close on Dec. 5, 2013, subject to customary closing conditions.

BofA Merrill Lynch, J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley are serving as the joint book-running managers of the offering. The offering is being made under an automatic shelf registration statement on Form S-3 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on September 3, 2013.

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