The polar vortex that blanketed big swaths of the U.S. with snow this winter is also giving cover to companies seeking to explain why earnings rose last quarter at the slowest pace in almost two years.
Sales at U.S. retailers rose in February for the first time in three months, claims for jobless benefits dropped last week and consumer confidence improved, pointing to an economy regaining traction after a harsh winter slowed demand even more than previously estimated.
Macy’s Inc., the second-largest U.S. department-store company, topped fourth-quarter profit estimates after recording a smaller-than-projected charge for a cost- cutting program, even as winter weather hampered sales.
Macy’s Inc. is rewarding bondholders with the retail industry’s biggest returns as the most- profitable U.S. department store boosts sales in the face of what may be the weakest holiday shopping season since 2009.
Macy’s Inc., the second-largest U.S. department-store company, forecast profit for its next fiscal year ahead of analysts’ estimates and disclosed a program to cut costs that includes eliminating about 2,500 jobs.
Retailers of all stripes -- from home-goods merchant Pier One Imports Inc. to discounter Family Dollar Stores Inc. and luxury lingerie seller L Brands Inc. -- are providing hard evidence that the discount war that marked the holiday season will take a toll on profit.
Terry Lundgren, chief executive officer of Macy’s Inc., said he was so upset when Martha Stewart called to tell him about her company’s deal to sell products at J.C. Penney Co. stores that he hung up on her and hasn’t spoken with her since.