Key sales figure drops at Saks for November

AP News
Posted: Dec 03, 2009 9:04 AM

Luxury department store chain Saks Inc. said Thursday that its sales at stores open at least a year dropped 26.1 percent for November, more than Wall Street expected.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the figure to fall 20.8 percent.

It is a key indicator of retailer performance because it measures growth at existing stores and excludes those at stores that open or close during the year.

Total sales for the four-week period that ended Nov. 28 fell 25.1 percent to $245.1 million.

Saks Fifth Avenue stores and Saks Direct were weak across nearly all merchandise categories, the company said. Sales at Off 5th, the company's outlet chain, were stronger.

The results reflected lower promotional and clearance activity than in November last year and the shift of a designer clearance event that was held in November last year to December this year.

The company expects its sales at stores open more than a year to fall by a high single-digit percentage for the fourth quarter.