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THE MAY DEPARTMENT STORES COMPANY REPORTS FIRST QUARTER EARNINGS OF $.60 PER SHARE, UP 7 PERCENT

 THE MAY DEPARTMENT STORES COMPANY REPORTS
 FIRST QUARTER EARNINGS OF $.60 PER SHARE, UP 7 PERCENT
 ST. LOUIS, May 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The May Department Stores Company (NYSE: MA) today reported fully diluted earnings per share of $.60 for the first quarter of 1992, the 13 weeks ended May 2, a 7 percent increase from $.56 per share in the similar quarter last year. Net earnings were $81 million for the quarter compared to $76 million in the year-ago period. Net retail sales for the first quarter were $2.30 billion, up 5.9 percent from $2.17 billion in the 1991 first quarter.
 David C. Farrell, May chairman and chief executive officer, said, "We are pleased to report increases in store-for-store sales and earnings per share as we continue to operate in a difficult economy. We are encouraged somewhat by our most recent sales results and, while having planned conservatively, we look forward to a continuing improvement in the economy."
 During the first quarter, May opened two department stores -- one for Filene's at Silver City Galleria in Taunton, Mass., and one for G. Fox at the Galleria at Crystal Run in Middletown, N.Y. Payless ShoeSource opened nine net new stores during the quarter. For the balance of 1992, May plans to open an additional four department stores and approximately 260 Payless ShoeSource stores.
 The May Department Stores Company is the largest department store retailer in the United States, operating 319 department stores and 3,304 specialty shoe stores at the end of the first quarter.
 THE MAY DEPARTMENT STORES COMPANY
 Condensed Consolidated Results of Operations
 (In millions, except per share)
 (Unaudited)
 Thirteen weeks ended: May 2, 1992 May 4, 1991
 Pct. to Pct. to
 $ Revenues $ Revenues
 Net Retail Sales:
 Department stores $ 1,868 $ 1,779
 Payless ShoeSource 429 389
 Total Net Retail Sales $ 2,297 $ 2,168
 Revenues $ 2,388 $ 2,313
 Cost of sales 1,668 69. 8 1,600 69.2
 Selling, general and
 administrative expenses 508 21.3 514 22.2
 Interest expense, net 82 3.5 80 3.5
 Earnings before income taxes 130 5.4 119 5.1
 Provision for income taxes 49 37.8(A) 43 36.2(A)
 Net Earnings $ 81 3.4 $ 76 3.3
 Primary Earnings per Share $ .61 $ .58
 Fully Diluted Earnings
 per Share $ .60 $ .56
 Dividends Paid per
 Common Share $.40-1/2 $.39-1/2
 Primary Average Shares and
 Equivalents 124.3 123.9
 Fully Diluted Average Shares
 and Equivalents 132.2 132.1
 (A): Percent represents effective income tax rate
 Net Retail Sales - Percent Change versus Prior Year
 Net retail sales represent the sales of stores operating at the
 end of the latest period. They exclude finance charge revenue and
 the sales of stores which have been closed and not replaced. Store-
 for-store sales represent sales of those stores open during both
 periods.
 13 Weeks ended May 2, 1992 Total Store-for-Store
 Department stores 5.0 pct. 1.8 pct.
 Payless ShoeSource 10.2 (1.7)
 Total 5.9 pct. 1.2 pct.
 THE MAY DEPARTMENT STORES COMPANY AND SUBSIDIARIES
 Notes to Condensed Consolidated Results of Operations
 Interim Results. The unaudited condensed consolidated results of
 operations have been prepared in accordance with the company's
 accounting policies as described in the 1991 annual report to
 shareowners and should be read in conjunction with that report.
 In the opinion of management, this information is fairly presented
 and all adjustments (consisting only of normal recurring
 adjustments) necessary for a fair statement of the results for the
 interim periods have been included; however, certain items are
 included in this statement based on estimates for the entire year.
 Also, operating results of periods which exclude the Christmas
 season may not be indicative of the operating results that may be
 expected for the full fiscal year.
 Trailing Years' Results.
 Operating results for the trailing years were as follows
 (millions, except per share):
 52 weeks ended: May 2, 1992 May 4, 1991
 Net retail sales $10,163 $ 9,616
 Revenues $10,690 $10,182
 Net earnings $ 520 $ 496
 Fully diluted earnings per share $ 3.91 $ 3.72
 -0- 5/11/92
 /CONTACT: Jim Abrams of May Department Stores, 314-342-6343/
 (MA) CO: May Department Stores Company ST: Missouri IN: REA SU: ERN


TQ -- NY032 -- 8533 05/11/92 10:38 EDT
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Date:May 11, 1992
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