J.C. Penney Q3 Sales Down, Net Loss Shrinks

Third quarter sales at J.C. Penney were down, but the department store retailer reported a smaller net loss and its CEO said the retailer was “making progress” in its effort to turn around the struggling company.

Net sales for the quarter ended November 2 decreased 10.1% to $2.38 billion compared to net sales of $2.65 billion for the quarter ended November 3, 2018. Comparable store sales decreased 9.3% for the quarter.

Adjusted comparable store sales, which exclude the impact of the company’s exit from the major appliance and in-store furniture categories, decreased 6.6% for the quarter.

Net loss in the quarter was $93 million, or $0.29 per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $151 million, or $0.48 per diluted share in the comparable quarter the previous year. Adjusted net loss was $97 million, or $0.30 per share, this year compared to an adjusted net loss of $164 million, or $0.52 per share, last year.

Inventory at the end of the third quarter was $2.93 billion, down 9% compared to the end of the third quarter last year.

Jill Soltau, J.C. Penney CEO, said the retailer made significant progress in its efforts to return the company to sustainable, profitable growth.

“We are beginning to see results— both in our numbers and how we operate as a business— from the early implementation of our Plan for Renewal, which is focused on driving traffic, offering compelling merchandise, providing an engaging experience, fueling growth, and building a results-minded culture,” said Soltau.