Designer jewelry a bright spot for Neiman-Marcus

In the four-week January period, comparable revenues in the Specialty Retail Stores segment, which includes Neiman Marcus stores and Bergdorf Goodman, decreased 4.5%. Top merchandise categories were women’s fine apparel and contemporary sportswear, designer handbags, cosmetics, and designer jewelry.

Comparable revenues at Neiman Marcus Direct for the four-week January period increased 27.4%. The January sales results were positively impacted by a shift of the fiscal 2003 calendar compared to last year. With this shift, the week following Christmas, historically a slower selling period for the direct business, was included in December in fiscal 2003 compared to January in fiscal 2002. In the direct-to-consumer business, the Neiman Marcus brand experienced the highest year-over-year sales performance, supported by strong sales in linens, women’s contemporary sportswear and dresses and ladies’ shoes.

Comparable revenues for the Neiman Marcus Group for the second quarter of fiscal year 2003 increased 0.5%. For the second quarter of fiscal year 2003, Specialty Retail Stores comparable revenues decreased 2.1%. Neiman Marcus Direct second quarter fiscal year 2003 revenues were 11.7% above the previous year.

“Overall, business in the second quarter was somewhat softer than we originally anticipated. However, our customers continued to seek the highest quality and most fashionable merchandise,” said Burton M. Tansky, president and CEO. “Our focus on this core customer strengthened our full-price selling and should result in an improvement in gross margins and net earnings for the second quarter compared to last year.”

The Company currently expects earnings in the range of $0.63 to $0.68 per share for the second quarter of fiscal year 2003.

The Neiman Marcus Group plans to report second quarter earnings on Wednesday, March 5, 2003 after the market closes.

The Neiman Marcus Group includes the Specialty Retail Stores segment, which consists of Neiman Marcus Stores and Bergdorf Goodman, and Neiman Marcus Direct, the direct marketing operation. The operations of Neiman Marcus.com, previously included in the Other business segment, is now included in the Direct Marketing segment.