Big Retailers Report Sales Gains

May 10, 2002

Big Retailers Report Sales Gains

Sterling, Zale Corp. and Whitehall all boosted sales for the February-April 2002 period, beating many other categories of retailing in the size of the increases.

Sterling, the U.S. division of U.K.-based Signet Group, said comparable-store increases were 6.6% over 2001, while total sales were up 15.1%. Sterling credited greater levels of marketing activity for the good U.S. performance.

Zale Corp. had a 4.7% increase in comparable-store sales and a total increase in sales of 6.3%. Outgoing CEO and Chairman Robert J. DiNicola said the increases indicated a steady improvement in business, as well as the corporation's continued recapturing of market share.

Whitehall Jewellers' comparable-store sales increased 4.9%, while total sales were up 8.2%. The retailer was particularly proud of the comparable-store increases over the same quarter in 2001, when comparable stores sales had declined 16.7%.

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