Market Overview

Cato Reports September Same-Store Sales Down 9%


Updates 3Q Guidance

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Oct. 6, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The Cato Corporation (NYSE: CATO) today reported sales of $76.2 million for the five weeks ended October 1, 2016, an 8% decrease from sales of $83.2 million for the five weeks ended October 3, 2015.  Same-store sales for the five-week period decreased 9% from the prior year.

Sales for the thirty-five weeks ended October 1, 2016 were $660.3 million, down 3% to sales of $680.9 million for the thirty-five weeks ended October 3, 2015.  The Company's year-to-date same-store sales decreased 4% from the prior year.

"September same-store sales were well below our expectations," stated John Cato, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer.  "We now expect third quarter earnings per diluted share will be in the range of $.07 to $.11 versus $.30 last year and down from our previous guidance of $.13 to $.18.  The decrease in earnings due to lower sales is offset by favorable adjustments to the effective tax rate as a result of continuing tax initiatives."

During the month of September, the Company opened one new store and closed one store.  A new store opened in Peachtree, GA.  As of October 1, 2016, The Cato Corporation operated 1,373 stores in 33 states, compared to 1,367 stores in 32 states as of October 3, 2015. 

The Cato Corporation is a leading specialty retailer of value-priced fashion apparel and accessories operating three concepts, "Cato", "Versona" and "It's Fashion".  The Company's Cato stores offer exclusive merchandise with fashion and quality comparable to mall specialty stores at low prices every day.  The Company also offers exclusive merchandise found in its Cato stores at  Versona is a unique fashion destination offering apparel and accessories including jewelry, handbags and shoes at exceptional prices every day.  Select Versona merchandise can also be found at  It's Fashion offers fashion with a focus on the latest trendy styles for the entire family at low prices every day.  Additional information on The Cato Corporation is available at

Statements in this press release not historical in nature including, without limitation, statements regarding the Company's expected or estimated financial results are considered "forward-looking" within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Such forward-looking statements are based on current expectations that are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements.  Such factors include, but are not limited to, the following: general economic conditions; competitive factors and pricing pressures; the Company's ability to predict fashion trends; consumer apparel buying patterns; adverse weather conditions and inventory risks due to shifts in market demand and other factors discussed under "Risk Factors" in Part I, Item 1A of the Company's most recently filed annual report on Form 10-K and in other reports the Company files with or furnishes to the SEC from time to time.  The Company does not undertake to publicly update or revise the forward-looking statements even if experience or future changes make it clear that the projected results expressed or implied therein will not be realized. The Company is not responsible for any changes made to this press release by wire or Internet services.

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SOURCE The Cato Corporation

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