National Jeweler Network

Financial Reporting

Nov. comps climb double digits for JC Penney

December 05, 2013

Plano, Texas--Due to “compelling promotions” J.C. Penney Co. Inc. recorded a 10 percent year-over-year increase in same-store sales in November, with its Modern Bride brand among the private labels showing signs of life. 

On Tuesday, the Plano-based department store chain issued a comp sales update for the month of November, which includes Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday and that Saturday, three of the biggest shopping days of the year for retailers.

In addition to a 10 percent increase in same-store sales, the struggling retailer, which is attempting to win back customers after former CEO Ron Johnson made changes that proved unpopular, said its e-commerce sales “continued to be strong, running well ahead of last year, consistent with last month’s trend.”

J.C. Penney’s online sales increased 38 percent year-over-year in October, the first month the retailer recorded positive comps in almost two years.

“We are pleased with our performance over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, particularly in light of the continue spending pressures on consumers,” CEO Myron Ullman III said. “The combination of our great merchandise and compelling promotions put us in a position to succeed in a highly competitive environment, and our teams executed very well.”

The company’s “compelling promotions” apparently include jewelry; as of Wednesday afternoon, was still offering 20 to 50 percent off its fine jewelry.

The retailer said it’s encouraged by the sales performance of what it termed as giftable items over the holiday weekend, especially among private brands including Modern Bride, St. John’s Bay and a.n.a.

In 2010, J.C. Penney inked a deal with publishing company Condé Nast to begin selling a line of bridal jewelry branded after its wedding-centric magazine Modern Bride, which ceased physical publication in 2009. Stores began carrying the Modern Bride line in early 2011.