November 14, 2011, 4:37 PM

Web sales drop for J.C. Penney in Q3

E-commerce revenue is up by only 1% for the first nine months.

Mark Brohan

Research Director

Lead Photo

The third quarter was a tough one for J.C. Penney Co. Inc. with sales down across all channels including online.

For the quarter ended Oct. 29, J.C. Penney, No. 20 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, reported:

  • E-commerce sales declined about 5.5% to $341.0 million from about $361.0 million in the third quarter of 2010.
  • Total sales decreased 4.8% year over year to $3.98 billion from $4.18 billion.
  • Comparable-store sales decreased 1.6%.
  • Net loss was $143.0 million compared with net income of $44 million in the third quarter of 2010.

Internet Retailer calculates the web accounted for 8.6% of total sales, the same as in the third quarter of 2010.

J.C. Penney attributes the drop in sales to the closing of its direct mail and catalog business. Decreased shopping among consumers with moderate incomes was another factor contributing to declining sales, says executive chairman Myron Ullman. “While our more affluent customers continued to respond well to J.C. Penney's attractions, the moderate customer continues to have limited discretionary spending capability, and that was apparent during the quarter,” says Ullman.

For the first three quarters:

  • Internet Retailer calculates that web sales increased 1% to $1.04 billion from $1.03 billion in the first three quarters of 2010. That calculation is based on earlier earnings results and the retailer’s quarterly statements on file with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission.
  • Total sales decreased 1.8% to $11.83 billion from $12.05 billion in the first three quarters of 2010.
  • Net loss was $65 million compared with net income of $118 million in the third quarter of 2010.

 Internet Retailer calculates the web accounted for 8.8% of total sales, up from 8.5% in the first three quarters of 2010.

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