Jos. A. Bank shows small profit, plans to expand Analyst says company has 'turned the corner'

November 27, 1996|By Liz Bowie | Liz Bowie,SUN STAFF

Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc. reported third-quarter earnings yesterday of $100,000, or 2 cents a share, compared with a loss of $2 million, or 30 cents a share, for the same period a year ago.

The Hampstead-based manufacturer and retailer was buoyed by a 19.5 percent increase in sales for the quarter that ended Nov. 2.

Sales increased to $36.8 million, up from $30.8 million for the same period in 1995. Sales at stores open at least a year gained 19.3 percent.

Jos. A. Bank, which last year lost $13.2 million, has now been profitable two out of the past three quarters.

"I think most of what we have in place now is working," said Timothy F. Finley, chairman and chief executive officer. "We are thrilled to death."

The earnings met analysts' projections.

"My take on the quarter is that Jos. A. Bank has finally turned the corner. The future is certainly brighter," said Kenneth Gassman, an analyst with the Richmond, Va.-based Davenport & Co.

Finley said the company, which currently operates 81 stories, planned to expand in the Northeast with 10 new stores in the coming year.

"We are looking at spots in greater New York," he said. "We are already doing well in Princeton and in Manhattan."

In the quarter just ended, Bank opened six stores -- in Annapolis, Florida, Georgia, Alabama, New Jersey and Virginia.

The Annapolis store is doing particularly well, the Bank chairman said.

For the nine-month period, Bank reported a net loss of $200,000, or 3 cents a share, compared to a net loss of $8.2 million, or $1.21 a share, in 1995.

Sales for the nine months increased $9.1 million, or 9.2 percent, to $107.9 million from $98.8 million for the same period in 1995.

Bank stock lost 12.5 cents yesterday to close at $4.125, prior to its earnings announcement.

Pub Date: 11/27/96

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