Macy's Inc. books its best quarter in years

Revenue up 3.6 percent

CINCINNATI - Macy’s Inc. surprised Wall Street with better than expected sales and earnings growth Wednesday, causing the stock to jump more than 12 percent in early trading.

The Cincinnati-based department store chain reported a $139 million profit on net sales of $5.5 billion in its first quarter, which ended May 5. Macy’s revenue performance was $150 million better than expected, while earnings per share of 42 cents was 7 cents ahead of analyst expectations.

“We exceeded our expectations and saw strong performance across all three brands—Macy's, Bloomingdale's, and Bluemercury—as well as across all geographic regions and families of business,” said CEO Jeffrey Gennette in a press release.

The performance led Macy’s to improve its earnings outlook by 20 cents per share for 2018. It's now telling investors to expect full-year earnings of up to $3.95 cents per share. It’s also telling investors to expect sales growth of up to 0.5 percent for the company.

One more positive indicator: Macy’s comparable-store sales increased 4.2 percent in the first quarter. That’s the second straight quarterly increase and the best number Macy’s has reported for this closely-watched metric in more than 15 quarters.

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