• Q3 profit up 8.4% to $55.2m 
  • Sales drop 0.6% to $1.46bn
  • Company optimistic for holiday season

US department store retailer Dillard's has said it is "well positioned" for the holiday season after booking an 8.4% increase in third-quarter net profit.

Net income reached US$55.2m for the 13 weeks to 1 November, compared to $50.9m in the same period last year. This, the company said, included a net after-tax credit of $3.8m related to the sale of a store.

Net sales edged down 0.6% to $1.46bn from $1.47bn in the prior year. Total merchandise sales fell 1% to $1.42bn from $1.44bn a year ago, while comparable stores also slipped 1%.

Gross margin improved 69 basis points, driven by increased markups and a decline in markdowns.

"We believe we are positioned very well for the holiday season, and we look forward to providing premium Dillard's service to our customers," said CEO William Dillard.