• Q3 profit jumps 35% to US$623m from $461.6m 
  • Sales increased 9% to $7bn versus $6.41bn 
  • Comparable store sales rose 5%

The TJX Companies has lifted its full-year earnings outlook, after higher sales and improved margins helped the off-price retailer to record a 35% increase in third-quarter net profit.

Gross margin edged up 0.5 percentage points to 29.3%, driven by buying and occupancy leverage on the above-plan sales and merchandise margin improvement.

"We are very pleased that our strong momentum continued in the third quarter. Our 21% increase in adjusted earnings per share and 5% consolidated comparable store sales growth were both well above our original plan and achieved over strong comparisons last year," said company CEO Carol Meyrowitz.

"We believe these robust results demonstrate, once again, our ability to succeed in all types of economic and retail environments."

Year-to-date net income reached $1.6bn, up 19.5% on $1.3bn last year. Sales increased 8% to $19.6bn from last year, while comparable store sales were up 3%.

TJX now expects full-year diluted earnings per share to be $2.91-2.94, up from its earlier guidance of $2.89-2.93, assuming comparable store sales growth of 3%.

Meyrowitz said the fourth quarter has got off to a "good start", adding: "Longer term, we see tremendous potential ahead for TJX, and we remain very confident in our ability to continue driving substantial top- and bottom-line growth."