Ross Stores, Inc. (NASDAQ: ROST) opened 10% up today after releasing second quarter earnings yesterday after the bell.
The company saw an impressive comparable store sales growth of 4% in addition to the 4% growth of last year, helping along its bottom line to reach $0.82 per share and clinch net earnings of $317 million, up from the previous year’s $282 million. “We are pleased with the better-than-expected growth we delivered in both sales and earnings in the second quarter, especially given our strong multi-year comparisons and today’s volatile retail climate. Operating margin of 14.9% outperformed our projections, mainly due to a combination of higher merchandise margin and leverage on our above-plan sales gains,” said Barbara Rentler, CEO, according to Business Wire.
Buoyed by these results, the company released favorable forward looking statements as well, with the third quarter expected to have a seasonal slowdown and reach an expected EPS of $0.64 - $0.67, up from the previous year’s $0.62, in addition to comparable store sales growth of 1% - 2%. Guidance for the fourth quarter is lively, with the same expected comparable store sale growth but a higher EPS, $0.88 - $0.92, especially from last year’s $0.77. All combined this amounts to a full year guidance hike for the retailer, with an expected EPS increase of 12% - 14% for the 53 weeks of fiscal 2017.