Macy's dismal first-quarter results are bringing back unwelcome memories of the financial crisis, as the retailer on Wednesday reported two metrics that harken back to that period of economic malaise.
During the first quarter, the department store chain said its comparable sales fell 5.6 percent. That marks a deceleration from its fourth-quarter same-store sales decline of 4.3 percent, and represents its most severe decrease in this metric since the second quarter of 2009. During that quarter, Macy's comparable sales slid 9.5 percent.
Meanwhile, the retailer reported a 36 percent year-over-year drop in operating income. That not only marks its seventh straight quarter of year-over-year declines for this measure, but it is far steeper than any quarter during the Great Recession, said Ken Perkins, president of Retail Metrics. In second quarter of 2009, by comparison, the retailer's operating income fell closer to 10 percent.
"Even more disconcerting is the sequential drop-off in operating income starting with -0.7 percent in third quarter 2014," Perkins told investors.