Sears Hometown and Outlet slips in Q1

The former division of Sears Holdings saw sales decline 3.2% to $601.1 million.

Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, the former division of Sears Holdings that spun off in October, posted first quarter sales of $601.1 million, down 3.2% from the first quarter last year.

Net income for the quarter ended May 4 was $15.0 million, down from $20.6 million in last year's first quarter.

Same-store sales of lawn and garden, the retail company's second-largest category, dropped 45% in the first two months, the company said, as cool weather took its toll. The category improved significantly in April, when it showed comp-store sales gains of 4.2%

"Sales were below last year due to the impact of unusually cool weather in February and March," said Bruce Johnson, CEO and president. He said comps for most other categories, not counting consumer electronics, were positive during the first quarter.

As of May 4, the Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based company operated 1,253 stores. Sears Hometown stores sell appliances, tools, lawn and garden, sporting goods and household goods. Outlet stores are designed to offer discontinued, obsolete, used or reconditioned merchandise at deep discounts. 

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