CHARLOTTE, N.C., Aug. 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Cato Corporation (NYSE: CATO) today reported sales of $63.4 million for the four weeks ended July 28, 2012, up 1% to sales of $63.0 million for the four weeks ended July 30, 2011. Same-store sales for the month were down 2% to the prior year. Sales for the second quarter ended July 28, 2012 were $231.5 million, down 1% from sales of $234.1 million for the second quarter ended July 30, 2011. Second quarter same-store sales decreased 4%. Sales for the first half were $504.2 million, flat to the prior year's first half sales of $505.0 million. Same-store sales for the first half were down 3% to the prior year. "July same-store sales reflect the continuing economic uncertainty and the related volatility we have seen throughout much of the year," commented John Cato, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer. "We now expect second quarter earnings per diluted share to be near the high end of our original range of $.53 to $.57 vs. $.61 last year, a decrease of 13% to 7%." The Company will release second quarter results on Thursday, August 16, 2012. During the month the Company opened a store in Gretna, LA, relocated a store in Marietta, OH and closed one store. As of July 28, 2012, The Cato Corporation operated 1,295 stores in 31 states, compared to 1,285 stores in 31 states as of July 30, 2011. 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 financial results for the second 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. 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.