CHARLOTTE, N.C., May 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Cato Corporation (NYSE: CATO) today reported sales of $77.0 million for the four weeks ended May 4, 2013, a 9% decrease from sales of $84.9 million for the four weeks ended April 28, 2012. Same-store sales increased 1% for the month.
Sales for the first quarter ended May 4, 2013 were $267.2 million, a 2% decrease from sales of $272.8 million for the first quarter ended April 28, 2012. Same-store sales for the first quarter decreased 5%.
The shift of Easter from early April last year to late March this year favorably impacted April sales, while March sales were unfavorably impacted. Because of this shift, the best measure for performance is the combined sales for the two months, which decreased 3% overall and were down 6% to the prior year on a same-store basis.
"April sales and the combined sales for March and April were below expectations," stated John Cato, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer. "We now expect first quarter earnings per diluted share will be in the range of $1.02 to $1.04 versus $1.09 last year, a decrease of 6% to 5% from last year."The Company will release first quarter results on Thursday, May 23, 2013. During the month of April, the Company opened two stores and relocated one store. New stores opened in Maplewood, MO and Wichita, KS and the relocated store was in Monroeville, AL. As of May 4, 2013, the Company operated 1,307 stores in 31 states, compared to 1,293 stores in 31 states as of April 28, 2012. The Cato Corporation is a leading specialty retailer of value-priced fashion apparel and accessories operating three concepts, "Cato", "Versona" and "It's Fashion". The Company's Cato stores offer exclusive merchandise with fashion and quality comparable to mall specialty stores at low prices every day. Versona is a unique fashion destination offering accessories and apparel including jewelry, handbags and shoes at exceptional prices every day. It's Fashion offers fashion with a focus on the latest trendy styles for the entire family at low prices every day. Additional information on The Cato Corporation is available at www.catocorp.com. Statements in this press release not historical in nature including, without limitation, statements regarding the Company's expected or estimated financial results for the first quarter are considered "forward-looking" within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements are based on current expectations that are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements. Such factors include, but are not limited to, the following: general economic conditions; competitive factors and pricing pressures; the Company's ability to predict fashion trends; consumer apparel buying patterns; adverse weather conditions and inventory risks due to shifts in market demand and other factors discussed under "Risk Factors" in Part 1, Item 1A of the Company's most recently filed annual report on Form 10-K, as amended or supplemented, and in other reports the Company files with or furnishes to the SEC from time to time. The Company does not undertake to publicly update or revise the forward-looking statements even if experience or future changes make it clear that the projected results expressed or implied therein will not be realized. The Company is not responsible for any changes made to this press release by wire or Internet services. SOURCE The Cato Corporation