Federated February Comp Sales Decrease 1.6 Per Cent
Federated Department Stores Inc has reported total sales of $1.150bn for the four weeks ended March 3, 2001. This represents a decrease of 5.1 per cent from total sales of $1.211bn for the same period last year, and largely reflects the downsizing of Fingerhut. On a comp-store basis, Federated's February sales decreased 1.6 per cent.

Elder-Beerman Reports February Sales Increase
Sales for The Elder-Beerman Stores Corp were $39.7m for the four-week period ended March 3, 2001, a total sales increase of 1.6 per cent over the four week period ended February 26, 2000.

Comparable store sales increased 0.7 per cent compared to the same period last year. The best performing businesses in February were shoes, ladies moderate sportswear, junior sportswear, cosmetics, furniture and domestics.

The company estimates that normalized diluted net income per share for the fourth quarter of 2000 will fall in the range of $0.96 to $0.98 compared to normalized net income of $0.75 last year.

For the full year the company estimates normalized diluted net income per share will be in the range of $0.50 to $0.52 compared to normalized net income of $0.69 in 1999.

"In 2000 we began implementing a strategic plan emphasizing value in our merchandise, Concept Store growth, and increased efficiencies in our organization. We believe our strategic plan is the right plan to improve profitability and grow our business. The plan has already shown promise as evidenced by our fourth quarter performance," said Frederick J Mershad, chairman and chief executive officer.

Bebe Stores Announces February 2001 Sales Increase
Bebe Stores Inc has reported retail sales of $20.8m for the month ended February 28, 2001, an increase of 17.5 per cent over sales of $17.7m for the month ended February 29, 2000.

Same store sales for February decreased 2.8 per cent over the comparable period of fiscal 2000. Prior years' same store sales increases were 0.2 per cent for February 2000 and 20.6 per cent for February 1999.

Retail sales for the eight months ended February 28, 2001, were $196.0m compared to $168.8m for the corresponding period last year, an increase of 16.1 per cent. Comparable store sales for the eight months ended February 28, 2001 decreased 5.1 per cent.

Men's Wearhouse Reports February Sales
Men's Wearhouse has said that consolidated sales for the four weeks ended March 3, 2001 increased 6.7 per cent to $85.6m compared to $80.2m in the prior comparable period.

Comparable US store sales for the four weeks ended March 3, 2001 decreased 4.0 per cent versus a 7.7 per cent increase for the four weeks ended February 26, 2000.

The company's comparable Canadian (Moores Clothing for Men) store sales for the four weeks ended March 4, 2001 increased 14.7 per cent versus a 7.2 per cent increase in the four weeks ended February 27, 2000.

Wilsons Leather Reports 25.6 Per Cent Increase In February Sales
Wilsons The Leather Experts Inc has reported that sales for the four weeks ended March 3, 2001 increased 25.6 per cent to $46.9m compared to $37.3m for the four weeks ended February 26, 2000.

Comparable store sales increased 5.6 per cent for the four-week period ended March 3, 2001 on top of a 16.1 per cent increase for the four-week period last year.

Joel Waller, chairman and chief executive officer, said: "We are pleased with our February sales results as they clearly highlight continued strong consumer acceptance for all our product offerings. Importantly, these results mark an excellent start to our new fiscal year and as we move forward, we remain optimistic that we will be able to maintain this momentum as we continue to execute our long-term growth strategy."

Casual Male Announces February Sales
Casual Male Corp has reported total sales in its Casual Male Big & Tall, Repp Big & Tall and Work 'n Gear divisions for the four weeks ended March 3, 2001 were $29m, compared to $29m for the four weeks ended February 26, 2000.

For the month of February, comparable store sales decreased 4.9 per cent.

The TJX Companies Reports February Sales
The TJX Companies Inc has reported that sales for the four week period ended March 3, 2001 were $647m, up 7 per cent over $605m achieved during the comparable four week period ended March 4, 2000. Consolidated comparable store sales for the four week period decreased 1 per cent from last year.

Edmond English, president and chief executive officer, said: "February represented our most difficult comparison to last year. Sales slowed somewhat in the last week of the month and, as a result, we came in slightly below our plan. We are looking forward to the more important months of March and April, with our stores well-positioned with exciting, fresh spring merchandise."