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JCPenney Reports Strong September Sales.



Comparable Store Sales Increase 8.7 Percent

Direct Sales Increase 11.8 Percent; Internet Sales Increase 36 Percent

Management Raises Third Quarter and Full Year Earnings Guidance

PLANO, Texas Plano (IPA: /ˈpleɪnoʊ/) is a wealthy suburb of Dallas, Texas, located to the north, mainly within Collin County, but also extending into Denton County. According to the 2000 U.S.  -- J. C. Penney This article is about the department store chain. For its founder, see James Cash Penney. For the Irish retail chain branded Penney's, see Primark.
J. C. Penney Company, Inc [1](NYSE: JCP; most commonly known today by the name JCPenney or simply
 Company, Inc. (NYSE NYSE

See: New York Stock Exchange
:JCP See Java Community Process.

JCP - Java Community Process
) total department store sales increased 10.2 percent for the five weeks ended Sept. 30, 2006, and comparable store sales increased 8.7 percent, well ahead of initial guidance for the month. In last year's September period, comparable store sales increased 1.4 percent. Sales were strong across all apparel and accessory categories, with the best divisional performances in fine jewelry, children's and men's. Geographically, all regions had comparative store sales gains, with the best results in the northeast and central regions.

Direct sales in total increased 11.8 percent for the period, also well ahead of initial guidance. In the same period last year, Direct sales increased 0.4 percent. Internet sales through www.jcp.com continue to represent the Company's fastest growing sales channel, increasing approximately 36 percent in September on top of a 30 percent increase last year.

Sales Outlook

As noted previously, management believes it is prudent to take a cautious view of the consumer environment, as evidenced by continuing softness in big ticket home categories. Accordingly, management expects both comparable department store and Direct sales to increase low single digits in the four week October period. In last year's October period, comparable department store sales increased 2.4 percent and Direct sales declined 2.9 percent.

This week, the Company is opening 20 new stores in markets throughout the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. , with the majority of the stores built in the successful new off-mall format. This represents a first step in the acceleration of the Company's store opening program. In total, the Company will open 28 new stores in 2006, and has announced plans to open an additional 150 new and relocated stores in the 2007 to 2009 time period.

Earnings Guidance

As a result of sales and profit trends through the first nine weeks of the quarter exceeding initial expectations, management is raising third quarter guidance for earnings from continuing operations continuing operations

Parts of a business that are expected to be maintained as an ongoing segment of an overall business operation. Income and losses from continuing operations are reported separately if any segments have been discontinued during the
 to $1.11 per share, an increase of $0.04 per share from previous guidance. Incorporating the current increase, full year earnings from continuing operations are now expected to be approximately $4.61 per share compared to previous guidance of $4.57 per share.
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About JCPenney

J. C. Penney Corporation, Inc., the wholly owned operating subsidiary An operating subsidiary is a business term frequently used within the United States railroad industry. In the case of a railroad, it refers to a company that is a subsidiary but operates with its own identity and rolling stock.  of J. C. Penney Company, Inc., is one of America's largest department store, catalog, and e-commerce retailers, employing approximately 151,000 associates. As of July 29, 2006, J. C. Penney Corporation, Inc. operated 1,021 JCPenney department stores This is a list of department stores. In the case of department store groups the location of the flagship store is given. This list does not include large specialist stores, which sometimes resemble department stores.  throughout the United States and Puerto Rico Puerto Rico (pwār`tō rē`kō), island (2005 est. pop. 3,917,000), 3,508 sq mi (9,086 sq km), West Indies, c.1,000 mi (1,610 km) SE of Miami, Fla. . JCPenney is the nation's largest catalog merchant of general merchandise, and jcp.com is one of the largest apparel and home furnishings sites on the Internet. JCPenney refers to the Internet/catalog business as Direct.

This release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (PSLRA) implemented several significant substantive changes affecting certain cases brought under the federal securities laws, including changes related to pleading, discovery, liability, class representation and awards fees and  of 1995. Such forward-looking statements, which reflect the Company's current views of future events and financial performance, involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause the Company's actual results to be materially different from planned or expected results. Those risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, competition, consumer demand, seasonality, economic conditions, including the price and availability of oil and natural gas, changes in interest rates, changes in management, retail industry consolidations, government activity, and acts of terrorism or war. Please refer to the Company's most recent Form 10-K Form 10-K

A report required by the SEC from exchange-listed companies that provides for annual disclosure of certain financial information.


Form 10-K

See 10-K.
 and subsequent filings for a further discussion of risks and uncertainties. Investors should take such risks into account when making investment decisions. We do not undertake to update these forward-looking statements as of any future date. In addition, non-GAAP terms referenced are defined and presented in the Company's most recent annual report on Form 10-K.
COPYRIGHT 2006 Business Wire
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2006, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Oct 5, 2006
Words:669
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