Cato Reports September Same-Store Sales Up 2%

Raises 3Q Guidance

Oct 07, 2010, 06:00 ET from The Cato Corporation

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Oct. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- The Cato Corporation (NYSE: CATO) today reported sales of $72.1 million for the five weeks ended October 2, 2010, a 3% increase over sales of $70.0 million for the five weeks ended October 3, 2009.  Same-store sales for the five-week period increased 2% over the prior year.

Sales for the thirty-five weeks ended October 2, 2010 were $625.6 million, a 6% increase over sales of $592.5 million for the thirty-five weeks ended October 3, 2009.  The Company's year-to-date same-store sales increased 4%.

"September same-store sales were in line with our recent trend and higher than expectations," commented John Cato, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer.  "We now estimate third quarter earnings per diluted share will be in the range of $.17 to $.20 versus our previous guidance of $.12 to $.15 and $.10 last year."

During the month of September, the Company opened four new stores, relocated one store and closed one store.  New stores opened in Birmingham, AL, Delaware, OH, Chattanooga, TN and Houston, TX and relocated a store in Rockingham, NC.  As of October 2, 2010, The Cato Corporation operated 1,280 stores in 31 states, compared to 1,290 stores in 31 states as of October 3, 2009.

The Cato Corporation is a leading specialty retailer of value-priced fashion apparel and accessories operating two divisions, "Cato" and "It's Fashion".  The Company's Cato division offers exclusive merchandise with fashion and quality comparable to mall specialty stores at low prices every day.  The It's Fashion division offers fashion with a focus on the latest trendy styles and nationally recognized urban brands 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 third 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.  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