Myer posts a big fall in profit, slipping 23.1% to $62.2 million

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Sales at Myer are running below expectations and the retailer now expects full year profits to be weaker.

The department store today released half year results, showing net profit down 23.1% to $62.2 million.

Sales were up 1.5% to $1.763 billion or up 0.9% on a comparable store sales basis.

The results were within expectations. Market analysts had expected same-store sales to be up 0.8%, with total sales of $1.8 billion.

Myer says recent sales have been ahead of last year but below expectations.

“While ahead of last year, sales in February were below expectations and this trend has continued into March,” the company said. “The February operating gross profit margin result and early read on March sales has led to the company revising expectations for the year.”

The company now expects profit for the full year to be between $75 million and $80 million. Compare that to the 2014 financial year profit of $98.5 million.

Myer says trading conditions during the second quarter were challenging, only improving in late December.

The stocktake sale was ahead of last year but this wasn’t enough to make up for the shortfall in sales earlier in the half.

Cosmetics was the top performing category during the half, benefiting from growth across a number of brands.

Other strong performing categories included menswear, childrenswear, toys and entertainment.

Offsetting this was a poor result in womenswear sales.

The company announced a fully franked interim dividend of 7 cents.

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