Aeropostale (AR0), the mall-based specialty retailer of casual apparel and accessories, stands out among top apparel retailers in its August sales report.
Of seven of the largest apparel retailers, three reported increases in sales for the August 2008 four weeks.
August sales at Aeropostale — its primary customers are young people between the ages of 14 and 17 — increased 24 percent to $207.9 million compared with sales of $168.2 million for the four weeks ended Sept. 1 last year.
Likewise, Aeropostale’s same store sales increased 13 percent for the month compared with a 2-percent increase in the same period last year.
The TJX Companies (TJX) — which owns T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, HomeGoods and A.J. Wright in the United States; Winners and HomeSense in Canada; and T.K. Maxx and HomeSense in Europe — reported a 4-percent increase in sales for August. Same-store sales at TJX for the August period were flat compared with a year ago. Management attributes the latter to an unanticipated negative impact from foreign currency exchange rates.
Limited Brands (LTD) — Victoria’s Secret, Pink, Bath & Body Works, C.O. Bigelow, La Senza, White Barn Candle Co. and Henri Bendel — reported a 4-percent increase in August sales though comparable store sales for the four weeks fell 7 percent.
In the down column for August were:
— The Gap (GPS), reporting a 5-percent decrease in sales for August. Comparable store sales decreased 8 percent. Gap-owned Banana Republic and Old Navy saw, respectively, a 14-percent and 9-percent drop in comparable store sales for the August period.
— August sales at Nordstrom (JWN) fell 4.2 percent. Same-store sales dropped 7.9 percent.
— Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF) August sales dipped 5 percent; comparable store sales fell 11 percent.