JCPenney gets confidence boost from 4% holiday sales lift

JCPenney (NYSE:JCP) reported a 3.7 percent increase in same-store sales during the holiday season, stretching from November through December. The retailer expects that its fourth-quarter comparable sales will in turn be at the top range of its forecast of a 2 to 4 percent gain.

"Our highest priority over the last year has been to restore profitable sales growth at JCPenney," said JCPenney CEO Mike Ullman. "This holiday season was instrumental in that effort—and our teams delivered. I would like to thank our associates for their hard work, warrior spirit and commitment to delivering an exceptional customer experience every day. Customers clearly responded to our combination of great merchandise and compelling promotions this holiday season. We are proud of these results, and believe the work we are doing will fuel the continued growth of our business."

The department store had recently updated its mobile app in an effort to bolster online holiday sales and omnichannel initiatives in the wake of strong Cyber Monday mobile sales. The push was also attributed to JCPenney getting some of the most negative sentiment from shoppers on Cyber Monday, according to Engagor, which monitors chatter on social media.

Just before the holidays, JCPenney announced it was lowering its same-store sales forecast for the third quarter. Struggles under ex-CEO Ron Johnson are well documented, and despite the progress made since Mike Ullman's return as CEO, it looks like the retailer isn't out of the woods just yet.

For more:
-See this JCPenney press release

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