US-based fashion retailer Nordstrom, Inc. has reported that its net sales decreased 3.5% for the first quarter of 2019. The company’s first quarter net earnings were $37 million compared with $87 million during the same period in fiscal 2018.
Nordstrom’s top-line results were impacted by three areas – loyalty, digital marketing and merchandise – which contributed to declines across its full-price and off-price businesses, in both stores and online. In full-price, net sales decreased 5.1% compared with the same period in fiscal 2018. Off-price net sales decreased 0.6%. The total company digital sales, on the other hand, grew 7% and represented 31% of the business.
“While we expected softer trends from the fourth quarter to continue into the first quarter, we experienced a further deceleration. We had executional misses with our customers, and we’re committed to better serving them. This is well within our control to turn around,” said Erik Nordstrom, co-president, Nordstrom, Inc. “The strength of our inventory and expense execution helped mitigate a meaningful portion of our sales miss. We ended the quarter with inventories in solid shape, and our financial position remains strong. We’re actively taking steps to drive our top-line, and we’re focused on delivering on our financial goals.”
To date in fiscal 2019, Nordstrom has opened three stores, closed two stores and relocated one store. Going forward, for the 2019 financial year, Nordstrom will remain focused on three strategic objectives of gaining market share, improving profitability and returns and maintaining disciplined capital allocation to drive shareholder returns.