Mid-Priced Apparel Retailer Buckle Reports 10.1% Sales Drop in March

The Buckle Reports 81.5 Pct Jump In Online Sales

Mid-priced apparel, accessories and footwear retailer Buckle reported a drop in sales in March.

The 439-store firm’s comparable store net sales for March were down 10.1% from the same period the previous year, and its net sales for the month were down 9.2% year over year, the company said in a press release.

In February, comparable store net sales were down 6.9%, and net sales were down 6.1%, according to a March 2 press release.

During Buckle’s most recent quarterly earnings call, the company attributed the February decline to a tough comp.

“I would say that was the main part of it,” Buckle President and CEO Dennis Nelson said during the March 10 call. “We were up, last year, 33%. This year, we were down 6%.”

Nelson added that most of the February drop — $5.2 million of the $5.4 million drop — came in the footwear category. Sales in that category had leapt 64% in February 2022 — making for a tough comp.

The March drop, however, comes in comparison to March 2022 sales that were down from the previous year. In March 2022, Buckle’s comparable store net sales were down 9.7% from the same period in 2021 and its net sales were down 10.4%, according to an April 2022 press release.

The latest month’s drop came after a quarter in which clothing, accessories and personal care products retailer American Eagle Outfitters earned its second-highest revenue.

American Eagle said its activewear category is growing especially fast.

Fast-fashion retailer H&M, too, saw sales rise during the most recent quarter, reporting a 12% gain.

For the full fiscal year ended Jan. 28, Buckle’s comparable store net sales were up 3.3% year over year, and net sales were up 3.9%, according to a March 10 press release.

During the earnings call, Nelson attributed the fiscal year 2022 growth to “deepening our relationships with guests while growing the top line, empowering guests to shop however and whenever they want, growing out multichannel businesses and guests, developing great product assortments and maintaining a reputation as a denim destination, and optimizing our store base, working to make sure we are in the best shopping area in all our markets.”

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