The Comparable Sales was Fueled by Online Demand. Analysts had forecast a 20.97 percent fall in comparable sales, but the company reported a 13 percent rise.

SAN FRANCISCO, United States — Apparel retailer Gap Inc reported a 13 percent rise in quarterly comparable sales on Thursday, with shoppers buying Old NavyAthleta and Gap clothing online as the company’s stores remained shut due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Analysts had forecast a 20.97 percent fall in comparable sales, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

The San Francisco-based retailer reported a net loss of $62 million, or 17 cents per share, for the second quarter ended Aug. 1, compared to a profit of $168 million, or 44 cents per share, a year earlier.

Gap, which owns brands including Banana Republic, Old Navy and Athleta, reported earning $130 million in face mask sales alone last quarter.

The company said it sold face masks to both consumers and businesses.

While overall net sales were down for the quarter due to pandemic-induced closures and changing consumer demands, the company did report a 95% increase in online net sales compared to the same time period last year.

“Our strong performance in the second quarter reflects the customer response to our brands, products and experiences, particularly as we’ve rapidly adapted to the changing environment,” CEO Sonia Syngal said in a statement announcing the quarterly earnings. “I’m confident that our purpose driven lifestyle brands, size and scale, and advantaged digital capabilities are helping us win now and position us for growth in the future.”

Despite the urging of U.S. medical officials that face masks will help stop the spread of COVID-19, masks have become a flash point of controversy amid the pandemic.

Still, large swaths of the U.S. have mandated face coverings in places where social distancing is not achievable, causing the demand for face masks to surge overnight. Amid the pandemic, face masks have also taken the fashion world by storm.




Rishika Keyal