MENOMONEE FALLS — Kohl's posted a surprise profit for the fiscal first quarter, helped by the department store chain's moves to cut inventory in the wake of weak sales.
The Menomonee Falls-based retailer also affirmed its annual financial guidance, pushing up shares 11% higher in premarket trading on Wednesday.
Kohl’s said that it it cut inventory by 6% while it continued to see sales momentum with its Sephora beauty shops and noted that its stores were more productive.
The moves come after the department store chain said in early March that it planned to cut inventory this year by 5%, be more surgical with discounts and change how it showcases its merchandise to get shoppers to buy after the department store chain reported a big loss and a sales slump in the fourth quarter.
“Our first-quarter results were in line with our expectations and represented a first step as we work to drive sales and earnings performance over the long-term," said CEO Tom Kingsbury in a statement.
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Kingsbury, who was interim chief executive, was named its permanent CEO in February. The Kohl’s board member took over for Michelle Gass, who was named president of Levi Strauss & Co. late last year.
Kohl's is the first major department store to report fiscal first quarter results, but overall the latest bunch of reports underscore a slowdown in consumer spending, particularly in clothing and other non-discretionary items as shoppers wrestle with inflation.
Target last week reported another quarterly profit decline and issued a cautious sales and profit outlook for the current period. Walmart reported strong first-quarter sales results as the nation’s largest retailer’s low-prices continue to draw budget conscious consumers in a challenging economic environment, and it noted the financial strain facing its customers.
Home improvement chains Home Depot and Lowe's both cut their sales outlooks on weakening spending.
Kohl's reported net income of $14 million, or $0.13 per share, on revenue of $3.57 billion for the three-month period ended April 29.
In the same period a year ago, Kohl's said that it earned $14 million, or $0.11 per share, on revenue of $3.72 billion.
The average estimate of eight analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for a loss of $0.44 per share, and six analysts surveyed by Zacks expected $3.52 billion of revenue.
According to FactSet, analysts were projecting a loss of $0.43 per share on sales of $3.75 billion.
Comparable sales —those from stores or digital channels operating for the past 12 months— were down 4.3%.
The company said it expects a decrease in sales of 2% to 4% this fiscal year. It projects profits of $2.10 to $2.70 for the year.
Analysts are expecting profits of $2.32 per share, according to FactSet.
Jeff Richgels of the State Journal contributed to this story.
Emilie Heidemann picks her 5 favorite 2022 stories
"The storm will abate, and the sun will rise again."
That was a quote I read recently. It's was written by a renowned psychiatrist who actually practices locally.
It's hard not to get caught in the throes of all the headlines and wonder what the world is coming to. Even for me – an anxious and introverted pessimist-who-is-secretly-an-optimist with high hopes that, while the world may seem bleak at times, things will eventually get better.
There are still pockets of joy even in the deepest pits of fire.
I never envisioned that my journalism career would entail weathering an ongoing pandemic whose affects are likely to be felt for decades to come. For one story this year, I drove for miles as cars lined up outside a pharmacy waiting for a COVID-19 test amid a shortage caused by the omicron variant.
Eventually, that shortage eased. And more is now known about the once mystery virus that had everyone fearing an apocalypse was imminent.
Soon after, with a colleague and friend, we highlighted the problems plaguing Wisconsin's childcare industry as exacerbated by pandemic.
Since then, various organizations have sought ways to better support parents and providers with more work to be done. Sometimes, it takes work to make things better.
I covered the city of Madison's effort to better support businesses owned by people of color last spring. I recall one of my sources texting to tell me I had created "art" once the story published. Efforts continue.
Additionally, I wrote about how a local uptick in unionization rates (that's continuing by the way) was reflective of a national trend, and how the Dane County employers were jumping on the bandwagon to support workers with children despite no federal guidelines for doing so.
There are still no federal guidelines in December 2022, but the story did inspire a well-written column by the Wisconsin State Journal's editorial board.
Solving some problems may have to start with new knowledge and awareness, just like storms always start with lightning, and then cracks of thunder.
The clouds always pass with time. And the sun comes out again.
That's my personal theme for 2022. Enjoy the below collection.
Lines stretching 50 to 60 vehicles. Wait times topping two hours. Empty shelves normally stocked with at-home coronavirus test kits. Cold symp…
Before Angie Riedemann’s family moved to Madison at the end of January, the post-doctoral researcher contacted 40 local child care facilities …
A financial coach who helps Black women take control of their finances. An African landscaper who beautifies private yards and gardens. A text…
A growing number of workers in Madison and around the country have moved to unionize or picket as they push for higher wages, better working c…
‘Paying their fair share’: Madison companies embrace paid parental leave, but experts say more is needed
A global purveyor of gardening tools and a biotechnology company recently became the latest of Madison’s larger workplaces to offer employees …