The TJX Companies, Inc. - Pre Recorded Sales/ Trading Statement Call

Mar. 1.12 | About: TJX Companies (TJX)

TJX Companies Inc. (NYSE:TJX)

March 01, 2012 12:00 am ET

Executives

Sherry Lang - Senior Vice President of Global Communications

Sherry Lang

Good morning. This is Sherry Lang, Senior Vice President of Global Communications for the TJX Companies. Today is March 1, 2012, and I would like to welcome you to our Investor Call to discuss our February 2012 sales.

Before I begin, please note the forward-looking statements I make today about the company's results, expectations and plans are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results and actions to vary materially. These risks and uncertainties are discussed in the company's SEC filings, including, without limitation, the Form 10-K filed March 30, 2011.

Further, these comments are copyrighted by The TJX Companies. Any recording, rebroadcast, reproduction or other use of these comments for profit or otherwise, without prior consent of TJX, is prohibited and a violation of the United States' copyright laws. [Operator Instructions]

Now to recap the numbers. Sales for the 4-week period ended February 25, 2012, were $1.6 billion, up 12% over the $1.5 billion achieved during the 4-week period ended February 26, 2011. Consolidated comparable store sales for February 2012 increased 9%. It was great to see momentum continue to build to a strong finish in February, with traffic up across all businesses. Our 9% consolidated comp store sales increase was achieved on top of strong performance in the 2 prior years.

Further, we are pleased that our 4 major divisions all did extremely well in the month. We believe that very favorable weather patterns during the month helped boost demand for spring apparel. Getting off to a great start for the new fiscal year, we're excited by the opportunities we're seeing in the marketplace for terrific product. With our extremely fluid inventory position, we are very well positioned to take advantage of those opportunities.

With only the month of February behind us, we remain comfortable with the first quarter earnings per share guidance we provided last week. We refer you to our press release and recording of our conference call on February 22 for details in this regard, available on our website, www.tjx.com.

Now divisional comp store sales for February were as follows: Beginning with our U.S. divisions. At the Marmaxx Group, comp store sales increased by a very strong 8% in February on top of a strong performance in each of the past 2 years. I will go into further detail on Marmaxx in a moment. At HomeGoods, comp store sales increased by a very strong 14% in February. It is terrific to see HomeGoods' tremendous momentum continue.

Now to TJX Canada. At Winners and HomeSense combined, comp store sales for February increased 6% over last year. We are also pleased with the trends we are seeing in our Canadian business. Moving to TJX Europe, at T.K. Maxx and HomeSense combined, comp store sales increased 9% in February. It is great to see how well we're doing in Europe.

To give some additional color to February's results at the Marmaxx Group. Geographically, all regions of the country were strong. The Northeast and Southwest outperformed the chain. The West Coast was essentially in line with the chain. The Midwest and Southeast trailed the chain's average, but were still strong. As to merchandise categories at Marmaxx, apparel comped up 8% and home fashions comped up 7% in February.

Summing up. The new fiscal year is off to a great start as our strong momentum continued through February, which finished strongly. It's great to see both apparel and non-apparel perform well. As we move through the spring selling season, we are in an excellent position to ship fresh assortments on exciting brands and fashions to our stores.

We are convinced that our amazing values will continue to draw consumers into our stores. Again, we remain comfortable with the first quarter earnings per share guidance that we provided on February 22. As to monthly comp guidance, to recap what we said last week for the combined March-April period, we are planning on comp sales growth in the range of 1% to 3% on both a consolidated basis and at Marmaxx. In March, we are planning on comps to increase 1% to 3%, and in April, flat to up 2% on both a consolidated basis and at Marmaxx. We'll be reporting March sales on April 5, 2012.

[Operator Instructions] Thank you, and have a good day.

Operator

Good bye.

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