Target's Q2 Sales Rise 5%; CE Rebounds

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Minneapolis - Target reported mid-single digit sales and earnings gains for its second fiscal quarter, ended July 30, and a resurgence in its CE business.

Profits rose 3.7 percent to $704 million on total sales of $15.9 billion, a 5.1 percent increase. Comp-store sales increased 3.9 percent, while credit card revenues decreased 15 percent to $345 million.

"We're very pleased with our second quarter financial results, which benefited from an acceleration in the pace of our comparable-store sales growth," said chairman/president/chief financial officer Gregg Steinhafel. "We continue to focus on strong execution of our strategy, preparing Target to perform well in a variety of economic environments."

In a conference call, Steinhafel called the company's second-quarter performance the strongest in four years, fueled by store remodels, compelling merchandising and Target's 5 percent rewards program for its private-label credit card.

Merchandising executive VP Kathy Tesija said the most notable improvement was in CE, where tablets led by iPad "were quite strong" and TV sales showed "stability, and even growth," following several quarters of contraction.

The chain plans to open six new locations in the current quarter, and will enter urban markets and Canada over the next two years.


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