Macy's Earnings, Dividend Increase Point to New High

Clothes on hangers
Clothes on hangers

Macy's Inc. (NYSE: M) reported first-quarter 2013 results before markets opened this morning. The department store giant posted quarterly diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.55 on revenues of $6.39 billion. In the same period a year ago, Macy's reported EPS of $0.43 on revenues of $6.14 billion. First-quarter results also compare to the Thomson Reuters consensus estimates for EPS of $0.53 and $6.39 billion in revenue.

Macy's also has announced a dividend increase, from a quarterly total of $0.20 to $0.25, beginning with the current quarter. And the company has increased its stock buyback program by $1.5 billion, bringing the total available for share repurchases to $2.6 billion.

In its outlook statement, Macy's said that it continues to expect same-store sales growth of 3.5% for the 2013 fiscal year. The company also reiterated its EPS guidance for $3.90 to $3.95 for the year. The consensus full-year estimates call for EPS of $3.92 on revenues of $28.35 billion.

The company's CEO said:

We are especially pleased with our first quarter sales and earnings performance given the challenges we overcame in this period. These included sustained, unseasonably cool spring weather in our northern climate zones. In addition, we saw weakness among some of the most budget-conscious consumers, as well as among our higher household income Bloomingdale's customers.

The company did not mention its ongoing lawsuits against Martha Stewart Omnimedia Inc. (NYSE: MSO) and J.C. Penney Co. Inc. (NYSE: JCP) related to a contract between Macy's and Martha Stewart that Macy's thinks is exclusive and that Martha Stewart and J.C. Penney believe leaves room for other deals. J.C. Penney has won some initial rounds, but a conclusive decision has not yet been issued.

Shares are up about 2.2% in premarket trading this morning, at $48.45, which would be a new 52-week high if it holds. The current 52-week range is $32.31 to $47.67, and the high was posted yesterday. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $48.10 before today's results were announced.

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Earnings, Retail, Services Tagged: JCP, M, MSO