Cato Reports June Same-store Sales Down 10%

Updates 2Q EPS Guidance

Jul 05, 2012, 07:00 ET from The Cato Corporation

CHARLOTTE, N.C., July 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Cato Corporation (NYSE: CATO) today reported sales of $83.7 million for the five weeks ended June 30, 2012, a 7% decrease from sales of $90.4 million for the five weeks ended July 2, 2011.  Same-store sales for the five-week period decreased 10%.

Sales for the twenty-two weeks ended June 30, 2012 were $440.8 million, flat to sales of $442.0 million for the twenty-two weeks ended July 2, 2011.  The Company's year-to-date same-store sales decreased 3%.

"June same-store sales were below expectations," commented John Cato, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer.  "Year-to-date same-store sales results have been volatile, driven in part by various economic and political uncertainties as well as unseasonable weather.   We believe it is likely this volatility will continue and we remain cautious as we look toward the second half of the year.  We now expect second quarter earnings per diluted share will be at the low end of our original guidance range of $.53 to $.57, a decrease of 13% to 7% compared to $.61 last year."

During the month of June, the Company opened stores in Houston and San Antonio, TX, relocated a store in Bastrop, LA and closed one store.  As of June 30, 2012, the Company operated 1,295 stores in 31 states, compared to 1,286 stores in 31 states as of July 2, 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  

Statements in this press release not historical in nature including, without limitation, statements regarding the Company's expected financial results for the second quarter and second half 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.  Additional information concerning these and other important factors can be found in Item 1A. "Risk Factors" of the Company's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and any subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. 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