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Consolidated same-store sales at The TJX Companies Inc. (TJX - Analyst Report) climbed 8% year over year in the four-week period ended May 4, 2013. Comparable store sales in the period were at the higher end of the guidance provided by management.

Total sales climbed 9% to $2.0 billion in the aforementioned period. The growth is attributable to the strong customer traffic at all the divisions of TJX driven by fresh spring collections. Both apparel and home categories delivered strong results during the month.

In the U.S. division of The Marmaxx group, comp sales went up 7%, in line with management expectations. A strong 10% gain in home fashions comps and a decent 7% comp increase in apparel comps boosted the sales growth in the segment. All the geographic regions contributed to the same store sales growth in the segment. While Northwest and Florida reported strongest sales during the month, Southwest sales were up in mid single-digits, though it trailed all the other regions.

At TJX Canada, same store sales went up 3%. While the region was negatively affected by the cold weather at the beginning of April, weather improved toward the end of the month pushing up sales. At TJX Europe, comp sales went up 9% from the year-ago period.

Falling gas prices and the recovering job market encouraged the Americans to spend during the month. Limited Brands Inc. and Ross Stores (ROST - Analyst Report) reported comp rise of 2% and 7% respectively while Costco Wholesale Corp. (COST - Analyst Report) reported comp gain of 4%.

Guidance

For the first quarter of 2014, TJX refined its guidance and now expects earnings per share between 61 cents and 62 cents instead of 60 cents and 62 cents as announced previously.

Headquartered in Framingham, Mass., TJX is an off-price apparel and home fashions retailer operating in the U.S. and internationally. The company operates its stores under the T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, Winners, HomeSense, HomeGoods and T.K. Maxx trademarks. It currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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