Ross Stores, Inc. reported that sales for the four weeks ended Nov. 27, increased 10% to $696 million from $635 million a year ago. Same store sales for the month rose 6% on top of an 8% gain in the prior year.
For the ten months ended Nov. 27, sales totaled $6.417 billion, up 10% over the $5.84 billion in sales for the ten months ended November 28, 2009. Comparable store sales increased 6% on top of a 5% gain in 2009.
Michael Balmuth, Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “November sales were better than expected as we benefited from a continued focus on value by consumers that drove healthy traffic to our stores. Merchandise and geographic trends were relatively broad-based. Juniors and Shoes were the strongest merchandise categories, while Florida and Texas were the top performing markets.”
Looking ahead, Balmuth continued, “While we are very pleased with our above-plan results in November, predicting sales trends in the current uncertain macro-economic and retail climate remains difficult. Facing our toughest comparisons of the year, and with most of the holiday shopping period still ahead of us, we believe it is prudent to maintain our forecast for comparable store sales declines of 1% to 2% in both December and January versus very strong prior year gains of 12% and 8%, respectively. Based on these assumptions and our actual November sales results, we now project that earnings per share for the fourth quarter ending January 29, 2011 will be at the high end to somewhat better than our previous guidance range of $1.15 to $1.20.”