LIBERTY HOUSE, MACY'S
GET READY TO TRADE PLACES
CINCINNATI >> Federated Department Stores Inc. saw its third-quarter results swing into a profit, though sales were down 10 percent, as the department store operator battled the continuing weakening economy.
Liberty House parent
posts profit despite
The results, excluding an extraordinary item and restructuring charges, beat Wall Street expectations that were reduced last month when the company warned of lower than expected sales following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Federated this summer bought Hawaii's Liberty House department store chain for $200 million and is in the process of converting them to Macy's stores.
The changeover is expected to be complete for Nov. 23 -- the day after Thanksgiving, traditionally the start of the Christmas shopping season.
Federated said today that for the three months ended Nov. 3, income was $3 million, or 2 cents per share, compared with a loss of $668 million, or $3.32 per share in the year-ago period.
The third-quarter results reflected the costs of early payment of debt, the closure of its New Jersey-based Stern's retail division and the downsizing of its money-losing Fingerhut online retail unit.
When those expenses were excluded, Federated, which operates such department stores as Macy's and Bloomingdale's, had income of $32 million, or 17 cents per share. In the year-ago period, Federated posted comparable profits of $52 million and 26 cents per share.
Analysts polled by Thomson Financial/First Call expected 15 cents per share, though that was sharply reduced from a consensus estimate of 51 cents per share after Federated warned last month.
Federated shares closed up $2.28 today to $37.11.