• Q2 loss widens to $45m 
  • Sales slip 0.1% to $594.9m
  • CEO lowers FY EPS guidance 

Department store retailer The Bon-Ton Stores saw its second-quarter net loss widen on the back of one-off costs and a severance charge.

Net loss for the quarter ended 28 July widened to US$45m, compared to a $32.3m loss the same period last year.

Operating loss, which includes a $4m severance charge and other one-off costs related to targeted reductions to the company's cost structure, widened to $17.6m, compared to $11.8m last year. Gross margin rate slipped to 36% compared to 37.2% last year.

Net sales edged down 0.1% to $594.9m, while comparable store sales increased 0.1%.

Brendan Hoffman, president and chief executive officer said: "In the second quarter, we continued to identify and implement initiatives to improve our business. While the financial results were below last year, we are encouraged by the progress we have made in several areas, including merchandising, e-commerce and marketing."

As a result, the company has lowered its full-year outlook. It now expects diluted share to be between a loss of $1.35 to a profit of $0.20, compared to previous guidance of a loss of $0.95 to earnings of $0.50 per share.