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Target Q2 Earnings Up 4.1 Percent

Minneapolis – Target Corp. reported a net earnings increase of 4.1 percent to $358 million on sales of $10.9 billion for its second quarter, despite having an unfavorable gross margin rate compared to the same period last year.

The Target Stores segment of the company enjoyed an 11.3 percent increase in revenue hitting $9.5 billion in its second quarter, ended Aug. 2, up from the $8,5 billion posted during the same period in 2002. The company’s bottom line was hurt by a fall off in revenue in its Mervyn’s and Marshall Field’s stores, which fell 7.3 percent to $821 million and 3.4 percent to $569 million, respectively.

Target Stores comparable stores sales were up 2.7 percent, while Mervyn’s and Marshall Field’s were down, respectively, 7.9 percent and 2.4 percent.

For the six month period ended Aug. 2 the corporation increased its net earnings 2.7 percent to $707 million, up from $689 million made during the first half of 2002. Sales were up 7.8 percent to $20.6 billion, compared to the $19.1 billion generated during the prior year.