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New J.C. Penney CEO Says Quick Action Needed As Q3 Sales Fall

It was another tough quarter for J.C. Penney as sales for the three month period ended November 3 were down more than 5%.

Total sales for the quarter were $2.65 billion, down from sales of $2.82 billion in the comparable quarter the previous year. Net loss was $151 million, or $0.48 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $125 million, or $0.40 per diluted share in the third quarter of 2017. Comparable store sales were down 5.4%.

Jill Soltau, the company’s new CEO, said that while restoring J.C. Penney to sustained profitable growth will be a “lengthy process,” she knows quick action is needed.

“My commitment is that we will make sound, strategic decisions backed by data, and will always be rooted in delivering on our customers’ wants and expectations,” she said. “While these things take time, the results we are reporting today only strengthen our sense of urgency and purpose.”

With new management now in place, the company has withdrawn its previous 2018 full-year guidance. The retailer has updated its comparable store guidance and now expects same-store sales to be down low-single digits.