Target TGT +6.61% posted third-quarter gains that beat analysts’ expectations, driven by a solid performance from its U.S. business that it hopes will carry over into the make-or-break, fourth quarter holiday selling season.
The retailer’s troubled Canadian business also showed signs of improvement, the company said.
The quarterly rebound follows a rough patch for the cheap-chic discounter, which has been reeling from a brand-damaging security breach that led to the May resignation of CEO Gregg Steinhafel, a botched expansion into Canada as well as lackluster merchandising in its U.S. stores.
For the quarter ended November 1, Target’s sales rose 1.9% to $17.3 billion, reflecting a 1.2% gain in comparable sales combined with sales from new stores.
Net income rose to $352 million from $341 million in the year-ago quarter.
“We’re encouraged by the improving trend we’ve seen in our U.S. business throughout the year, and our fourth quarter plans are designed to sustain this momentum,” said Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO of Target, who replaced Steinhafel in July.
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