Merchandise margins for the quarter were 60.2% of sales compared to 59.8% of sales in the same period last year, reflecting strong input margins, an optimal balance between regular and promotional pricing, and well-managed inventory levels. Store occupancy costs were $67.2 million for the quarter, or 18.6% of sales, compared to $65.9 million, or 19.7% of sales, last year. Gross profit for the quarter improved to $150.3 million, or 41.6% of sales, from $134.1 million, or 40.1% of sales in the first quarter of last year.
First quarter selling, general and administrative expenses declined 40 basis points as a percentage of sales year-over-year and are detailed as follows:
|Three months ended|
|May 26, 2012||May 28, 2011||Increase|
|Expense||% Sales||Expense||% Sales||(Decrease)|
|($ in millions)|
|Store supplies, services and other||6.3||1.8||%||6.3||1.9||%||-|
|Other relatively fixed expenses||11.2||3.1||%||11.6||3.4||%||(0.4||)|
|Relatively fixed costs||33.8||9.3||%||31.3||9.3||%||2.5|
Operating income for the first quarter increased approximately 38% to $27.4 million, or 7.6% of sales, compared to last year’s operating income of $19.9 million, or 5.9% of sales.
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