Ross Stores 2Q14 Earnings Call Notes

This post is part of a series of posts called “Company Notes.” These posts contain quotes and exhibits from earnings calls, conference presentations, analyst days and SEC filings. Full transcripts can be found at Seeking Alpha

Difficult macro backdrop continues to pressure our customers

“We also achieved these gains in a very challenging climate for apparel retail, especially given the ongoing difficult macroeconomic backdrop that continues to pressure our customers discretionary spending.”

Haven’t seen much change, our consumer still struggling

“On the consumer piece, no, we haven’t really seen any major shifts from Q1 to Q2, but I think, it’s pretty apparent that the low to moderate income customer is struggling. I think, you’re seeing that in the – in some of the results that are being posted by the [ph] moderate apparel (25:17) retailers. So, I don’t think we have anything to add to that other than I think that that customer is challenged economically and finding this environment difficult.”

Plenty of off price merchandise around

” in terms of the supply, we’re seeing plentiful supply, amount of merchandise in the market.”

Kept ourselves tight and liquid in the promotional environment

“As it pertains to promotions in the market, Q2 was a highly promotional quarter, particularly in the mid-tier, and we really don’t see any reason for that to change in the back half of the year. In terms of how we got our margins, really what we did was plan very conservatively, left ourselves liquid, had plenty of open to buy, and we chased most of our business. We also had very tight inventory controls in this promotional environment, which is key so that you’re always liquid and fluid and you have constant open to buy.”