On the Call: Macy's CFO Karen Hoguet

On the Call: Macy's CFO Karen Hoguet talks about Sandy impact

Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Macy's Inc. told investors Wednesday that Superstorm Sandy would temper the start of the holiday season.

The department store owner based in Cincinnati posted a 4.3 percent increase in third-quarter net income on Wednesday and raised its forecast for the year. But it said November business would be negatively impacted by Sandy. Macy's, which also operates upscale Bloomingdale's, temporarily closed 200 stores, or about a quarter of its total, at one point last week. The storm slammed into the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast region two days after Macy's closed the books on its third quarter.

During a conference call with investors, Chief Financial Officer Karen Hoguet talked about Sandy's impact but expressed confidence that Macy's would remain resilient in face of the challenges.

QUESTION: How has Superstorm Sandy affected your business? Your customers?

ANSWER: "As we think about the storm's impact, it's greater than just the lost sales from the closing of the stores. Customers in the most directly impacted area of Long Island and New Jersey have other priorities right now. Transportation issues are making it challenging for customers who do want to shop to get to the stores. And to some degree, the receipt of merchandise was interrupted. We are spending unplanned dollars to make sure that our stores recover and are staffed so that we can both help customers and also get the new merchandise to the selling floors as fast as we can. Additionally, in an attempt to help customers in the impacted areas, both Macy's and Bloomingdale's will be extending the duration of promotional events just this week, and Macy's is adding a recovery coupon for customers who've experienced damage to their homes. We hope that these efforts will help us recover some of the lost sales."

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