Jewelry sales help boost Penney’s second-quarter profit

J.C. Penney Co. Inc. said Thursday that its second-quarter profit surged nearly 37 percent, helped by improving sales of jewelry, accessories and women’s apparel.

Sales at stores open at least one year rose 6.6 percent in the quarter. Total department store sales rose 7.1 percent.

Plano, Texas-based company said it earned $179 million in the quarter ended July 29. A year earlier, the company earned $131 million. Revenue rose 6.5 percent, to $4.24 billion from $3.98 billion a year earlier.

“The company had an excellent second quarter, with good customer response to fine jewelry, children’s and women’s accessories, as well as a solid rebound in apparel categories, particularly women’s,” said Myron E. (Mike) Ullman, III, Penney’s chairman and chief executive officer.