COLUMBUS, Ohio — L Brands Inc., which owns stores such as Victoria's Secret and Bath & Body Works, said Thursday that sales at stores open at least a year rose 6 percent in July. That easily beat analysts' expectations.
Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters forecast a 1.8 percent rise in the figure.
Sales at stores open at least a year is a key gauge of a retailer's health. It excludes results from stores recently opened or closed.
L Brands' total monthly revenue climbed 8 percent to $735.3 million.
The Columbus, Ohio, company said that sales at stores open at least a year increased 3 percent for the 13 weeks ended Aug. 2. Total revenue rose 6 percent to $2.68 billion.
For the year to date, sales at stores open at least a year climbed 3 percent while total revenue rose 6 percent to $5.07 billion.
L Brands — which also operates Pink, La Senza and Henri Bendel — said that it now anticipates second-quarter earnings coming in at the high end of its prior outlook of 57 cents to 62 cents per share. The forecast includes a severance charge of about 2 cents per share that was not included in its previous guidance.
Analysts polled by FactSet expect earnings of 61 cents per share.
Its shares rose $1.78, or 3 percent, to $60.97 in morning trading Thursday. Its shares have risen fallen 4.3 percent so far this year through Wednesday's close.