Welcome to Bed Bath &Beyond's third quarter fiscal 2016 earnings call. All participants will be in a listen-only mode until the Q&A portion of the call. Today's conference call is being recorded. A rebroadcast of the conference call will be available beginning on Wednesday, December 21, 2016, at 7:30 PM Eastern Time through 7:30 PM Eastern Time on Friday, December 23, 2016. To access the rebroadcast, you may dial 888-843-7419 with a passcode ID of 43897412.
At this time, I'd like to turn the conference call over to Janet Barth, VP, IR. Please go ahead.
Joining me on our call today are, Steven Temares, Bed Bath &Beyond's CEO and Member of the Board of Directors; Gene Castagna, COO; and Sue Lattmann, CFO and Treasurer.
(Forward-Looking Cautionary Statement)
And for those of you who may have holiday parties to get to tonight, here are some highlights. Third quarter net earnings per diluted share were $0.85. Net sales for the quarter were approximately $3 billion, an increase of approximately 10 basis points compared to the prior-year period. Quarterly comparable sales decreased approximately 1.4%. Sales from our customer-facing digital channels grew in excess of 20%, and sales from our stores declined in the low single-digit percentage range.
In addition, our Board of Directors today declared a quarterly dividend of $0.125 per share to be paid on April 18, 2017 to shareholders of record at the close of business on March 17, 2017.
Given the comp in the fourth quarter to-date and our assumptions for the remainder of the year, including the critical days leading up to Christmas, we are modeling a full-year comp sales decline of approximately 50 basis points, with net sales increasing about 1%.Fiscal 2016 net earnings per diluted share are expected to be at the low end of the range we have described in our previous earnings press releases.
During our call today, Sue will review our third quarter financial results and some of our planning assumptions for fiscal 2016 and then, Steven will give an update on some operational and strategic developments, including the recent acquisition of PersonalizationMall.com, which is known as PMall.com and PMall. After our prepared remarks, we will open up the call to questions.
I'll now turn the call over to Sue.
I'll start with a review of our third quarter results, which include the activity of PMall for the last few days of the quarter. Our net sales for the quarter were approximately $3 billion, an increase of approximately 10 basis points from the third quarter of last year, primarily due to a 1.5% increase in non-comp sales, including One Kings Lane and new stores, partially offset by a 1.4% decrease in comp sales.
As we expected, our third quarter comp sales trends were running sequentially better than the second quarter. However, sales softened considerably a week before the presidential election. After the election, comp sales picked back up and, in fact, we experienced relatively strong comp sales from Black Friday through Cyber Monday.
VP of IR
CFO and Treasurer
CEO and Director
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