Discount retailer Target Corp. says its same-stores sales fell 4.1 percent in February. That was better than analysts had expected, as shoppers bought necessities such as groceries and steered clear of apparel and home products.
Analysts expected sales in stores open at least one year, or same-store sales, to fall 4.8 percent.
The company says groceries and health products were the biggest sellers while apparel and home products were weaker. The average amount shoppers spent per trip fell during the month.
Total sales were flat at $4.37 billion.
The company expects March same-stores sales will decline in the high single digits and expects April same-store sales to be relatively flat.
Target's chief rival Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said same-store sales for the month rose 5.1 percent, far surpassing analyst expectations.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)