Jos. A. Bank: Clearance Sale

Kiplinger looks at one of our most frustrating stocks, Jos. A. Bank (JOSB):

Investors are uneasy with Bank because the Hampstead, Md., retailer shuns Wall Street. In January, the company (symbol JOSB) stopped reporting monthly same-store sales, which track sales at stores that have been open for a year or more. Same-store sales give investors a clearer sense of how the retailer is performing because the measure excludes revenue from newly opened locations. Bank also skips the customary question-and-answer sessions with analysts on its quarterly conference calls and doesn’t make earnings projections.
But look past Bank’s unfortunate cone of silence and you’ll see a high-end retailer in better financial shape than its battered stock would indicate. The company has grown rapidly under chief executive Robert Wildrick, who took control of the 103-year-old retailer in 1999.
Sales have tripled from $194 million in fiscal 1999 to $604 million in fiscal 2007, which ended last January 31. Net profit has gone up every year, from $3 million in 1999 to $50 million in 2007. In 1999, Bank had less than 100 stores in the U.S. Now it has more than 420 locations.

Posted by on May 27th, 2008 at 11:02 am

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