Ross Stores October key revenue metric up 4 pct

Ross Stores key revenue figure up 4 pct in October, but is short of Wall St. view, stock drops

Associated Press

PLEASANTON, Calif. (AP) -- Ross Stores' revenue at stores open at least a year climbed 4 percent in October, short of Wall Street's expectations.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters predicted a 4.6 percent increase. This figure is a key indicator of a retailer's health because it excludes results from stores recently opened or closed.

Shares fell $2.05, or 3.4 percent, to $58.90 in morning trading, even as the company slightly lifted its earnings prediction for the fiscal third quarter, saying its merchandise sales were more profitable.

For the four weeks ended Oct. 27, total revenue, which includes new shops, increased 8 percent to $715 million, the discount retailer said Thursday.

Third-quarter revenue at stores open at least a year rose 6 percent. Total revenue for the August-October period climbed 11 percent to $2.26 billion, matching expectations of analysts polled by FactSet.

Ross Stores Inc. now expects quarterly earnings of 71 to 72 cents per share. It previously predicted profit of 70 to 71 cents per share. Wall Street forecasts earnings of 71 cents per share.

The Pleasanton, Calif. company will report its full third-quarter financial results on Nov. 15.

Year-to-date revenue at stores open at least a year rose 7 percent, while total revenue increased 12 percent to $6.96 billion.

Ross Stores runs nearly 1,100 discount stores in the U.S.

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