Gottschalks Inc. announced same store sales for the month of December 2002 decreased by 1.6% from the prior year. Total sales for December were $128.7 million, a 3.3% decrease from $133.1 million for the same month last year. The decrease in total sales is partially the result of three fewer stores operating this year compared to December 2001.
Same store sales for the two month holiday selling period including November and December decreased by 2.4% from the same period of the prior year. Total sales for the two month holiday selling period were $197.3 million, a 4.1% decrease from $205.8 million for the same two month period in the prior year, which is partially the result of fewer stores operating this year compared to the same period in 2001.
For the year-to-date period, same store sales decreased by 0.9%. Total sales year-to-date decreased 2.9% to $655.9 million from $675.3 million for the same period last year. The total sales decrease is mainly attributable to the closing of six stores in 2001 and two additional closures in July of this year.