News Feb 23, 2017 09:09 PM EST

Nordstrom’s Quarterly Earnings Beat Expectations

By Joyce C. Abaño

US upscale department store chain, Nordstrom Inc., has posted growth in fourth quarter earnings that exceeded analysts' expectations, the retailer announced.

Nordstrom reported earnings of $201 million, or $1.15 per share, for the quarter ending Jan. 28, exceeding the $1.13 per share analysts surveyed were anticipating. Excluding the fourth quarter tax effect of the Trunk Club goodwill impairment, adjusted earnings per diluted share was $1.37.

The Seattle-based chain reported a 2.4 percent increase in company net sales to $4.2 billion for the quarter compared with the $4.1 billion net sales it posted during the previous corresponding period.

Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) was $424 million, up from the $324 million from the previous corresponding period. Total company comparable sales decreased 0.9 percent for the quarter.

The fashion specialty retailer posted a retail EBIT increase of $84 million compared with the prior quarter the previous year, reflecting non-operational items in 2016 and 2015. Excluding these items, Retail EBIT increased $12 million of 3.3 percent.

Nordstrom's full year net earnings were $354 million, a decrease from the $600 million for the same period in fiscal 2015. EBIT was $0.8 billion compared to the $1.1 billion from the previous corresponding period.

The company reached record sales of $14.5 billion in 2016, achieving the following milestones in executing its growth plans: continued market expansion into Canada for a total of five full-line stores, including two Toronto store openings in fall 2016, contributed $300 million in the retailer's total sales; sales has reached over $2.5 billion, which represents approximately 25 percent of Nordstrom's full-price sales. Nordstrom Rack sales also grew 11 percent to $4.5 billion, boosted by 21 new store openings and 32 percent online growth.

The retailer announced on Feb. 21 that SPACE at Nordstrom will introduce "The Lab," an incubator project to showcase and support new designers in select stores and online.

"The Lab" project, which was conceived and curated by Olivia Kim, vice president of Creative Projects at Nordstrom, will present five designers selected for the inaugural season: Eckhaus Latta, Vejas, Eric SchlösbergA.W.A.K.E. and Dilara Findikoglu.

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