US department store chain Kohl's Corporation has reported net income for the quarter ended 2 May of US$137m, compared with $153m a year ago.

Net sales were $3.6bn, an increase of 0.4% for the quarter. Same-store sales for the quarter decreased 4.2% though.

Kevin Mansell, Kohl's president and chief executive officer, said: "We achieved our goal of gaining market share through our performance in both comparable and total sales in the first quarter. Our merchandise margins improved through strong inventory management and successful exclusive brand strategies.

"We also managed expenses well while improving our store experience. We continue to expect 2009 to be challenging from a macro-economic perspective and, therefore, remain conservative in our sales expectations, inventory levels and expenses. We are focused on gaining market share in this difficult environment."

During the quarter, Kohl's successfully opened 19 stores. The company ended the quarter with 1,022 stores in 49 states, compared with 957 stores in 47 states at the same time last year.

It expects to open an additional 37 stores later this year for a total of 56 stores in fiscal 2009.

The company provided initial guidance for its second fiscal quarter ending 1 August of $0.56 to $0.64 per diluted share.