Target Q4 Comps Projected to Decline; Provides Update on Data Breach

TargetMINNEAPOLIS-Target said it now expects fourth-quarter same-store sales to fall 2.5 percent, and added that it is continuing its investigation of the data breach of customer payment information.

The retailer said its comparable-store estimate is based on what proved to be stronger-than-expected fourth-quarter sales prior to its announcement of the data breach on Dec. 19, followed by “meaningfully weaker-than-expected sales” since that date. Same-store sales are also expected to fall from 2 to 6 percent for the remainder of the quarter.

As part of its investigation of the data breach, Target said it is offering one year of free credit monitoring and identity-theft protection to all shoppers in its U.S. stores. Consumers will have three months to enroll in this program.

Target also said it is planning to close eight U.S. stores on May 3, 2014. The stores include one in Illinois, two in Nevada, one in Georgia, one in Tennessee, one in Florida and two in Ohio.