Discount retail operator TJX Cos. reports results for the third quarter on Tuesday before the market opens. The following is a summary of key developments and analyst opinion related to the period.
OVERVIEW: TJX Cos., which operates T.J. Maxx and Marshalls, is seeing sales at stores open more than a year rise as cash-strapped consumers want to save money during the weak economy. These sales are considered a key retail performance indicator because they measure growth from existing stores rather than newly opened ones.
Sales in stores open at least one year rose 10 percent in October, just below the 10.1 percent increase expected by analysts polled by Thomson Financial.
TJX, citing the sales increase, forecast third-quarter profit from continuing operations at or slightly above a previously projected range of 77 cents to 79 cents per share.
During the second quarter, profit rose 31 percent, narrowly beating Wall Street expectations, as consumers shopped for basics, such as sheets and towels, in addition to fashion items.
BY THE NUMBERS: Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expect earnings of 80 cents a share and revenue of $5.25 billion.
ANALYST TAKE: BMO Capital Markets analyst John Morris, who rates the stock "Market Perform," expects TJX's focus on value to boost customer traffic in the near-term.
Stronger-than-expected sales and margins and "clean" inventory also caused Morris to lift his third-quarter profit estimate by a penny to 80 cents per share.
His $38 price target implies that shares have room to decline 2.5 percent from Friday's close of $38.98.
WHAT'S AHEAD: Analysts and investors are looking toward the holiday season, when retailers record a large portion of yearly sales.
STOCK PERFORMANCE: Shares of TJX rose 18.1 percent for the third quarter.