Expense Management Bolsters Foot Locker

Although Foot Locker Inc. reported a 16 percent sales slide in the second quarter, the company managed to post break-even profit for the three months ended Aug. 1, thanks to a reduction in expenses and inventories.
The New York-based retailer on Thursday reported earnings of $18 million, or 11 cents a share, exactly on par with last year’s earnings and 4 cents ahead of analyst estimates on Yahoo Finance.
Sales, though, dropped to $1.1 billion, from $1.3 billion in the second quarter of last year. Analysts had expected sales of $1.17 billion for the quarter. Same-store sales dropped 12.1 percent.
“The lower-than-anticipated sales in our U.S. businesses on our second-quarter earnings were mitigated by the aggressive actions we took to control expenses and inventories,” Matthew Serra, Foot Locker’s chairman, said in a statement.
For the first half of the year, Foot Locker’s earnings grew to $31 million, or 20 cents a share, compared with $21 million, or 13 cents, in the first six months of 2008. Before closing expenses and impairment charges, though, net income for the first half of 2008 totaled $39 million, or 25 cents. First-half sales dipped 11 percent to $2.3 million.

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