FORT WORTH, Texas Pier 1 Imports reported that it continues to see positive trends with increases in traffic, conversion and average ticket for the first two months of the third quarter and believes the comparable-store sales increase for the third quarter ending Nov. 27 will be in a range of 8% to 10% compared with last year’s third-quarter comparable-store sales increase of 13.7%. Merchandise margins for the third quarter are expected to be approximately 58% of sales compared with last year’s third quarter merchandise margins of 56.6% of sales.
Alex Smith, president and CEO, said, “We are pleased with our strong September and October sales results, which are on top of strong sales last year. We believe this momentum will continue throughout the holiday selling season. As always, we are very diligent with controlling costs. However, to capitalize on and maintain the strong traffic and seek to maximize sales, we have added approximately $3 million of additional store payroll and marketing in the third quarter. We are upbeat on the start of our holiday selling season and look forward to the couple of months that lie ahead.”