San Antonio — The Progressive Retailers Organization was at the Westin La Cantera Hill Coun
WILKESBORO, N.C . — Driven by strong increases in categories such as major appliances, home improvement retailer Lowe's Cos. registered a 16.4 percent increase in sales during its fiscal second quarter, reaching $6.13 billion, up from $5.26 billion in the year-ago second quarter. Comp-store sales increased by 1.7 percent in the second quarter. Net earnings hit $329.1 million for the three months ended August 3, a 17.7 percent increase over the $279.6 million registered in the same period in 2000. Sales for the six months jumped 17.2 percent to $11.4 billion, up from $9.7 billion in the same period in 2000. Comp-store sales decreased by 0.5 percent in the first half. Net earnings grew 18.8 percent to $554.4 million, compared with $466.7 million in the year-ago six months.
CLEVELAND — Office products retailer OfficeMax said the slowing U.S. economy, affecting orders for computers, desks and office stationery from small businesses, helped push second-quarter sales down about 11 percent to $978.8 million, compared with $1.1 billion in the year-ago period. Same-store sales were off 7 percent in the second quarter ended July 28. OfficeMax posted a $24 million net loss in the second three months, compared with $24.1 million in the same three months in 2000. The company predicted a return to profitability in the second half, even though it does not expect the economy to improve meaningfully before the end of 2001. Sales in the six months dropped from $2.4 billion in the first half of 2000, to $2.2 billion in this year's first six months. Net loss for the first half climbed to $40.6 million, compared with $26.2 million in the year-ago period.