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Kohl's stays firm on outlook despite weak first-quarter sales

Kohl’s joins a growing list of retailers whose first-quarter results took a hit from a severe and extended winter. Despite missing estimates, the company is staying firm on its guidance for the full fiscal year.

The company reported net sales for the quarter of $4.07 billion, a 3.1% decrease from $4.2 billion for the prior-year quarter. Comparable-store sales decreased 3.4% in the quarter compared to a 1.9% decrease in the prior-year quarter. Net income was $125 for the quarter, a drop of 15% from $147 in the prior-year quarter. Diluted earnings per share fell 9% to $0.60 from $0.66 in the prior-year quarter.

“We did not achieve our first quarter sales goals, but we were encouraged by the improvement in sales as the quarter progressed,” said chairman, president and CEO Kevin Mansell. “Our teams managed our inventory levels appropriately and expenses were controlled throughout the organization during the quarter."

The company still anticipates diluted earnings per share of $4.05 to $4.45 for fiscal 2014, which is consistent with its previous guidance.

Kohl’s ended the quarter with 1,160 stores in 49 states, compared with 1,155 stores at the same time last year. The company opened four new store locations, relocated one existing store and permanently closed two stores during the quarter.