Macy’s Earnings Call Nuggets: Second Quarter Sales Trends and Second Half Outlook

Macy’s Inc (NYSE:M) recently reported its second quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call.

Second Quarter Sales Trends

Paul Trussell – Deutsche Bank Research: Just a question about the cadence of the sales trends throughout the second quarter, was it weak right from the very start or softened more towards the end?

Karen M. Hoguet – CFO: No. It was weak throughout the quarter. May was impacted by the shift in the Friends & Family. So, it was a little bit hard to judge, but it was weak throughout the quarter.

Paul Trussell – Deutsche Bank Research: You mentioned that you are encouraged about the August sales to-date particularly on back-to-school categories. Could you give a little bit more color, specifically is the quarter-to-date trend within your 2.5% to 4% range?

Karen M. Hoguet – CFO: I can’t comment on the numbers for couple of weeks, but we are doing significantly better than we were doing in the second quarter in back-to-school, but frankly, across the country and across all categories. So, it really does feel like we’re on to a new trend, but again, two and half weeks does not make a season.

Paul Trussell – Deutsche Bank Research: Lastly, for me, you spoke about the marketing approach, the change we’re going to have in the second half. Could you just give a little bit more color on what we should expect? Are these sharper discounts across multiple categories and what should we – what difference should we see in your marketing and promotional cadence?

Karen M. Hoguet – CFO: Well, obviously being sensitive to not sharing data to our competitors. You know really what we are trying to do is communicate more broadly and be more clear and crisp in communication, in terms of how we are offering value, and we’re obviously also trying to be very sensitive to the fact that in this environment price matters. So, you know, but we are trying to do things in a balanced way, both in terms of brand marketing and also what we call demand. But it really is just stepping up – making our voice louder.

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