Macy’s Inc net sales were down 8% from $5.6bn to $5.1bn in the second quarter of 2023. This decrease in sales included both brick-and-mortar and digital side.

EBITDA fell to $221 from $614 while Macy’s booked a net loss of $22m compared with a $275m profit a year earlier.

However, Gennette believes the company delivered “better-than-expected” top and bottom-line results despite the uncertainty in the macroeconomic environment.

He continues: “Our teams surgically implemented clearance markdowns and promotions to effectively clear spring seasonal receipts and ensure fresh assortments for the fall and Holiday seasons. We are leveraging our robust data science tools to refine inventory composition while reading and reacting to shifting consumer preferences to meet demand.”

However, Gennette explains that taking a step back, Macy’s exited the first quarter with excess spring seasonal receipts due to lower-than-anticipated demand trends in the back half of the quarter.

The company committed to entering fall in a clean inventory position and says it ended the second quarter with inventories down 10% against last year and down 18% on 2019.

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Cautionary outlook for 2023

While sharing the outlook for Macy’s moving forward on a call with analysts, Gennette is quick to mention that the company remains cautious about the pressures impacting its customer base.

He adds: “Over the last several quarters, we have seen the Macy’s customer more aggressively pull back on spending in our discretionary categories. They are not converting as easily and becoming more intentional in the allocation of their disposable income with an ongoing shift to services and experiences.”