• Q2 net earnings up 4% to $59.4m
  • Net sales edge up 1% to $662.3m

Men's apparel retailer The Men's Wearhouse has seen its second-quarter net profit increase 4% on the back of better-than-expected sales, improved margins and a lower tax rate.

Net earnings reached US$59.4m for the three months ended 28 July, compared to $57.1m in the same period last year because of improved retail segment gross margin and a lower than expected tax rate. Operating income climbed 2.9% to $91.6m.

Net sales edged up 1% to $662.3m, while comparable store sales increased 4.4% as customers responded positively to the company's merchandise. Retail segment sales rose 3.2% or $18.7m.

Comparable store sales for its tuxedo rental division jumped 4.3% due to increased rentals and sales of tuxedo accessories, while K&G comparable store sales declined 3.3%.

CEO Doug Ewert said: "Sales at our flagship brand Men's Wearhouse stores, which represented approximately 65% of our total second quarter sales, were above both prior year sales and our plan for the 2012 second quarter."

"Moores, our retail brand in Canada, was roughly 12% of our total sales mix in the 2012 second quarter and also had a better than expected comparable store sales increase of 2.5%. Moores continues to perform well in its market," Ewert added.

Looking forward, the company expects diluted earnings per share to range from $0.95 to $0.98 for the third quarter and full-year diluted earnings per share to be between $2.74 and $2.80.