Off-price retailer The TJX Companies has raised its third-quarter and full-year earnings and sales guidance on the back of a tax benefit.

Third-quarter diluted earnings per share are expected to be US$0.84-0.85, up from its earlier guidance of $0.69-0.72 and higher than last year's $0.62. The company said the guidance reflects a $0.11 tax benefit due to reversals of state and foreign tax reserves and allowances.

Third-quarter comparable store sales are forecast to grew 4%, compared to previous guidance of 2-3% and last year's 7% increase.

For the full year, TJX now expects diluted earnings per share to be $2.89-2.93, up on its prior guidance of $2.74-2.80 and $2.55 last year.

Full-year comparable store sales are still forecast to rise 2-3%. The retailer has maintained its fourth-quarter earnings per share guidance of $.77 to $.80.

The improved forecast comes ahead of the group's investor event today (22 October) which will focus on plans to raise long-term store growth potential for its Marmaxx division (TJ Maxx and Marshalls) in the US.

The retailer will also detail its goal for TJX Europe (TK Maxx and HomeSense) to reach at least 10% profit margin and reiterate its aim to grow earnings per share annually by 10%-13% for the next three years.

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The TJX Companies, Inc. Raises View of Q3 and Full Year FY14 and Highlights Investor Event Focus: Increased Long-Term Store Growth Potential; Greater Margin Potential in Europe; and Confidence in Long-Term EPS Growth Model

FRAMINGHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 21, 2013-- The TJX Companies, Inc. (NYSE:TJX), the leading off-price retailer of apparel and home fashions in the U.S. and worldwide, is raising its forecast for the current year’s (Fiscal 2014) third quarter and full year results. In addition, the Company will focus its Investor Event tomorrow, October 22, 2013, on its increased long-term store growth potential and the Company’s key strengths that underscore its confidence in these estimates. Ahead of the event, the Company also confirmed its long-term EPS growth model.

Company Raises View of Third Quarter and Full Year Fiscal 2014

With strong sales and profit margins quarter-to-date, the Company is raising its third quarter Fiscal 2014 earnings per share and comparable store sales guidance. The Company now expects third quarter diluted earnings per share to be in the range of $.84 to $.85, compared with last year’s $.62 per share. This guidance now reflects an estimated $.11 tax benefit, due to reversals of state and foreign tax reserves and allowances, that was not contemplated in the Company’s previous guidance. Excluding the tax benefit, on an adjusted basis, this guidance would be $.73 to $.74, an 18% to 19% increase over the prior year. The Company now expects third quarter consolidated comparable store sales growth to be approximately 4% over last year’s reported 7% increase.

The Company is also raising its full year earnings per share outlook to reflect its increased third quarter guidance. For the fiscal year ending February 1, 2014, the Company now expects diluted earnings per share of $2.89 to $2.93 versus$2.55 in Fiscal 2013. On an adjusted basis, excluding the $.11 tax benefit discussed above, this guidance would be$2.78 to $2.82. Excluding the approximately $.08 benefit from the 53rd week in the Company’s Fiscal 2013 calendar, this adjusted EPS guidance would represent a 13% to 14% increase over the prior year’s adjusted EPS of $2.47. This outlook continues to be based on estimated consolidated comparable store sales growth of 2% to 3%.

The Company is maintaining its fourth quarter earnings per share guidance of $.77 to $.80, compared to $.82 last year, which also included the approximately $.08 benefit from the extra week in Fiscal 2013.

Investor Event Focus

Company to Raise Long-Term Store Growth Potential in Current Markets

The Company will raise its estimates for long-term store growth potential on a consolidated basis with its current chains, in its current markets. The most significant factor in this increase is that TJX now believes that its Marmaxx division (T.J. Maxx and Marshalls) can grow to substantially more stores in the U.S. than it had previously estimated. Marmaxx has seen successful growth in both major cities and rural areas over the last several years, which has given the Company the confidence to increase its growth estimates.

Company Sees Greater Margin Potential for European Division

The Company will discuss its view that it now sees TJX Europe (consisting of T.K. Maxx and HomeSense) as having the long-term potential to reach a 10%-plus segment profit margin. Previously, the Company had modeled its European division at a potential 8%-plus margin. TJX Europe has reported strong results for the past seven quarters, which has given the Company confidence in this division’s increased ability to lever its infrastructure as it pursues its expansion opportunities.

Continued Confidence in Long-Term Annual EPS Growth Model of 10%-13%

The Company is also confirming its confidence in its ability to grow earnings per share annually by 10%-13% for each of the next three years. The underlying components of this plan remain as follows: The Company expects to grow its sales by 6%-7%, with approximately 2% growth coming from comparable store sales and 4%-5% from square footage growth. An additional 1%-2% is estimated to come from segment profit margin improvement and an additional 3%-4% is expected to come from the Company’s share repurchase program.

About The TJX Companies, Inc.

The TJX Companies, Inc. is the leading off-price retailer of apparel and home fashions in the U.S. and worldwide. As ofAugust 3, 2013, the end of the Company’s second quarter, the Company operates 1,052 T.J. Maxx, 914 Marshalls, 430 HomeGoods and 4 Sierra Trading Post stores as well as SierraTradingPost.com in the United States; 226 Winners, 89 HomeSense, and 22 Marshalls stores in Canada; and 355 T.K. Maxx and 27 HomeSense stores in Europe. TJX’s press releases and financial information are also available at www.tjx.com.

Original source: http://investor.tjx.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=118215&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1866510&highlight=