Burlington Stores profit, sales fall less than expected

Burlington Stores Inc.
BURL,
-1.08%
reported Tuesday fiscal third-quarter profit and sales that fell less than expected, with same-store sales showing “significant improvement” the last two months of the quarter, but starting November weakly. The off-price retailer’s stock was still inactive in premarket trading. Net income for the quarter to Oct. 31 fell to $8.0 million, or 12 cents a share, from $96.5 million, or $1.44 a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding non-recurring items, adjusted earnings per share fell to 29 cents from $1.53, due primarily to a drop in sales and higher product sourcing costs, but beat the FactSet consensus of 16 cents. Total revenue fell 6.4% to $1.67 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $1.55 billion. Same-store sales fell 11%, beating expectations of a 16.3% decline, as a “challenging” August was followed by an improvement to a decline of 4% for the combined September-October period. “Unfortunately, the outlook remains uncertain and unpredictable – in fact the situation across the country with COVID-19 appears to be deteriorating,” said Chief Executive Michael O’Sullivan. “The fourth quarter has gotten off to a weak start with November month-to-date comparable store sales running down in the low double digits.” The stock has edged up 0.9% year to date, while the S&P 500
SPX,
+0.56%
has advanced 10.7%.

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