TJX Cos. stock TJX fell 2% premarket Wednesday, after the discount retailer and parent to T.J. Maxx, HomeGoods and Marshalls stores posted better-than-expected fiscal first-quarter profit but sales that lagged consensus. The company had net income of $891 million, or 76 cents a share, in the quarter to April 29, up from $587 million, or 49 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Sales rose to $11.783 billion from $11.406 billion a year ago. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of 72 cents and sales of $11.824 billion. Same-store sales rose 3% to beat the 2.7% FactSet consensus. “Our pretax profit margin and earnings per share both significantly exceeded our plan and our 3% comparable store sales increase was at the high end of our plan,” Chief Executive Ernie Herrman said in a statement. The pretax profit margin came to 10.3%, above the 7.5% posted a year ago. Inventories stood at $6.4 billion at quarter-end, compared to $7.0 billion a year ago. “As a reminder, total inventories in the first quarter of Fiscal 2023 were elevated primarily due to a larger in-transit balance as a result of supply chain delays,” said the company. It’s now expecting second-quarter same-store sales to grow 2% to 3%, while FactSet expects growth of 2.9%. It expects EPS of 72 cents to 75 cents, compared with a FactSet consensus of 80 cents. For fiscal 2024, it expects same-store sales to grow 2% to 3% and for EPS to range from $3.49 to $3.58. The FactSet consensus is for same-store sales to grow 2.9% and for EPS of $3.53. The stock is down 1.7% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 SPX has gained 7%.

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