The Cato Corporation reported sales for the five weeks ended April 5, 2014 of $102.0 million, a 3% decrease from sales of $105.6 million for the five week period ended April 6, 2013. Same-store sales for the month decreased 5%.
Sales for the nine weeks ended April 5, 2014 were $188.9 million, a 1% decrease from sales of $190.2 million for the nine weeks ended April 6, 2013. The Company's year-to-date same-store sales were down 2% to the prior year.
March sales were unfavorably impacted by the shift of Easter from late March last year to mid-April this year. We expect April sales will be favorably impacted. Because of this shift, the best measure for performance is the combined sales for the two months.
"We continue to expect first quarter earnings per diluted share to be in the range of $0.89 to $0.95," said John Cato, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer.
During the month of March, the Company opened stores in Conyers, GA and Kalamazoo, MI. As of April 5, 2014, the Company operated 1,322 stores in 32 states, compared to 1,305 stores in 31 states as of April 6, 2013.
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.