Putting same-store sales into perspective
J.C. Penney grew its same-store sales by 6.2% during the first quarter, or 7.4% using the new calculation method that the company will use from now on. This is an acceleration compared to the fourth quarter's 2% increase, and it's significantly better than the negative same-store sales reported by Kohl's and Macy's.
However, there are two problems here. First, this 6.2% increase is from a significantly depressed level. In the first quarter of 2013, same-store sales declined by 16.6%, and in the first quarter of 2012, same-store sales declined by 18.9%. So while J.C. Penney appears to have performed well, the same-store sales growth needs to be put into perspective.
Firstly, you've quoted another writer, and should have given credit.
Secondly, the gist of the message is logically flawed. For a turnaround to be a turnaround, the recent performance must be better than previous performance. The greater the difference, the greater the turnaround. Having an up quarter is made all the more remarkable considering the rapid slide of the past year, not written off as an easy comparison. I agree that this matter should be put in perspective, something the writer has clearly failed to do.
What if sales for Q1 had been up by 15%? When JCP recovers to an annual revenue of $18 billion, will narcissistic writers be complaining that recovery to that level was easy because JCP had done that well before?