Federated Department Stores, parent of Macy's and Bloomingdale's, said stronger sales at established stores and lower costs drove a 5% rise in fourth-quarter earnings.
Separately, the company said it will ask shareholders to approve a corporate name change to Macy's Group. The company also announced a $4 billion increase to its stock buyback program and said it will immediately repurchase 45 million shares for $2 billion under the plan.
For the quarter ended Feb. 3, net income rose to $733 million, or $1.40 per share, from $699 million, or $1.26 per share, in the prior-year period.
Stripping out costs related to the integration of the stores acquired in the 2005 acquisition of May Department Stores, Federated said earnings for the latest quarter were $1.66 per share, topping the company's estimate of $1.55 to $1.60 per share issued about three weeks ago. That figure includes a gain of 6 cents per share.