Stein Mart, Inc. announced total sales for the four-week January period were $67.9 million, an (-8.7) percent decrease from the $74.4 million in sales for the same period in 2002. Comparable store sales for January decreased (-12.0) percent from the previous year.
Merchandise categories with the best comparable store sales performance during January were intimate apparel, gifts and ladies accessories. Geographically, sales trends were strongest in California, Arizona and Florida.
Total sales for the 13-week fourth quarter of 2002 were $408.4 million, a 0.3 percent increase over the $407.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2001. Comparable store sales for the fourth quarter of 2002 decreased (-3.3) percent from the previous year.
Total sales for the 52-week 2002 fiscal year were $1.409 billion, a 6.7 percent increase over the $1.320 billion in sales for the same period in 2001. Comparable store sales for 2002 decreased (-0.8) percent from the 2001 fiscal year.
“As planned, we had limited clearance and cold weather merchandise at year-end; subsequently, with the unusually cold January in our key markets, our customers were not motivated to respond to our transition and spring merchandise to the extent we anticipated,” noted Michael D. Fisher, chief executive officer of Stein Mart. “Despite significantly lower than planned sales, the Company expects to earn approximately $0.50 per share for fiscal 2002 as compared to $0.37 per share earned in 2001.”