Apparel, footwear, and accessory retailer the Buckle
First, a recap of third-quarter results. Net sales grew an unastounding 3.6%, while same-store sales slipped 0.1%. But earnings grew 8.5% due to another income increase, and management repurchased its shares. Exciting? No, but conditions have improved since the second quarter, when total sales fell 1.7% and comps dropped 5.7%. So far this year, net sales have grown 2.1%, comps have fallen 2.1%, and net income is up 2.7%.
Although the above results could be characterized as uneven, the Buckle has actually posted quite stable and visible growth over the years. Net income and cash flow growth trends of the past three years are quite impressive, up close to 20% despite sales having only advanced in the mid-single digits over this time frame. The company has averaged 5% sales growth, 8.5% net income growth, and 10% operating cash flow over the past five years.
Demonstrating how hard it can be to find steady results in the retail clothing industry, Hot Topic
As I've mentioned previously, investing in the Buckle will probably not make you rich, but it has no long-term debt, is consistently profitable and pays a decent dividend with a yield of 1.9%. It is also capable of posting some solid bottom-line trends, as it has over the past few years.
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Fool contributor Ryan Fuhrmann has no financial interest in any company mentioned. Feel free to email him with feedback or to discuss any companies mentioned further. The Fool has an ironclad disclosure policy.