SEATTLE — Nordstrom Inc. said Monday its profit fell 8.6% in the fourth quarter as even its high-income core customers pared back on holiday shopping.
The Seattle-based luxury retailer beat Wall Street estimates but warned that it expects 2008 to be another challenging year as it strives to overcome lackluster sales of women's apparel amid weak consumer spending.
For the quarter ended Feb. 2, Nordstrom earned $212 million, or 92 cents a share, down from $232 million, or 89 cents, a year earlier. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were expecting 88 cents a share, on average.
Quarterly sales slipped 4.4% to $2.51 billion, in line with Wall Street estimates and down from $2.63 billion last year.
Excluding one extra week in the fourth quarter of 2006, Nordstrom said sales were essentially flat.
Sales at stores open at least a year, a key measure of a retailer's health, declined 0.7%.
Nordstrom released results after markets closed. The company's shares rose 98 cents, or 2.7%, to close at $36.98 on Monday, then gained another 21 cents in after-hours trading.