Macy's, Kohl's raise annual sales forecasts as shoppers return to stores

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(Reuters) -Macy’s Inc and Kohl’s Corp raised their full-year sales and profit forecasts on Thursday, as U.S. shoppers coming back to stores splurge on perfumes, shoes and apparel with vaccinations helping a return to pre-pandemic lifestyles.

Shares of Macy’s rose as much as 9% in premarket trading, as the company said it would restart paying dividends paused last year due to the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Quarterly net sales at Macy’s jumped 59% and 31.4% at Kohl’s, beating analysts’ average estimates.

The back-to-school shopping season, which runs from mid-July through early-September, is also expected to boost sales following a year when students were more mostly confined to home computer screens.

Macy’s said it expects full-year net sales of $23.55 billion to $23.95 billion, compared with a previous forecast of $21.73 billion to $22.23 billion.

It also raised its 2021 adjusted earnings per share forecast to $3.41 to $3.75, from $1.71 to $2.12.

Kohl’s now expects full-year net sales to increase in a low-twenties percentage range, compared with a previous forecast of mid-to-high teens percentage rise.

The company forecast 2021 adjusted earnings per share of $5.80 to $6.10, against a prior forecast of $3.80 to $4.20.

Walmart Inc and Target Corp also reported better-than-expected quarterly sales earlier this week as shoppers flocked back to stores.

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