Aggressive markdowns leave J.C. Penney Q2 profit flat

Plano, Texas -- J.C. Penney Co. reported Friday that net income for the quarter ended July 30 was flat at $14 million, citing aggressive markdowns for a lackluster performance that fell below Wall Street expectations.

Revenue dipped to $3.91 billion from $3.94 billion in the year-ago period. Same-store sales increased 1.5%.

According to J.C. Penney, its focus on the middle-to-lower-income shoppers creates a challenge, as those consumers face economic uncertainty heading into the back-to-school and holiday shopping seasons.

"The challenging economy continues to impact the moderate consumer," said Myron E. Ullman III, chairman and CEO in a statement. “"Nevertheless, we have made significant strides in implementing our merchandising growth initiatives.” 

J.C. Penney opened 22 Sephora inside J.C. Penney boutiques in the quarter, bringing the concept total to 276.