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UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
FORM 10-K
(Mark One)
þ
ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the fiscal year ended February 2, 2019
or
¨
TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the transition period from ___________ to___________
Commission file number 001-15059
NORDSTROM, INC.
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)
Washington
 
91-0515058
State or other jurisdiction of
incorporation or organization
 
(I.R.S. Employer
Identification No.)
 
 
1617 Sixth Avenue, Seattle, Washington
 
98101
(Address of principal executive offices)
 
(Zip Code)
Registrant’s telephone number, including area code (206) 628-2111
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
Title of each class
 
Name of each exchange on which registered
Common stock, without par value
 
New York Stock Exchange
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act: None
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. YES þ NO ¨
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. YES ¨ NO þ
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. YES þ NO ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files). YES þ NO ¨
Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant’s knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K. þ
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company, or emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company,” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filer þ
Accelerated filer ¨
Non-accelerated filer ¨
Smaller reporting company ¨
 
Emerging growth company ¨
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act). YES ¨ NO þ
As of August 3, 2018 the aggregate market value of the Registrant’s voting and non-voting stock held by non-affiliates of the Registrant was approximately $6.6 billion using the closing sales price on that day of $50.58. On March 11, 2019, 155,002,755 shares of common stock were outstanding.
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
Portions of the Proxy Statement for the 2019 Annual Meeting of Shareholders scheduled to be held on May 23, 2019 are incorporated into Part III.


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FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This Annual Report on Form 10-K contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, which are subject to the “safe harbor” created by those sections. Forward-looking statements are based on our management’s beliefs and assumptions and on information currently available to our management. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by terms such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “could,” “goal,” “would,” “expect,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “project,” “predict,” “potential,” “pursue,” “going forward,” and similar expressions intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, which may cause our actual results, performance, time frames or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance, time frames or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. We discuss many of these risks, uncertainties and other factors in this Annual Report on Form 10-K in Item 1A: Risk Factors, including, but not limited to, our anticipated financial outlook for the fiscal year ending February 1, 2020, our anticipated annual total sales rates, our anticipated new store openings in existing, new and international markets, our anticipated Return on Invested Capital, trends in our operations and the following:
Strategic and Operational
timely and effective implementation of evolving our business model and successful execution of our customer strategy to provide a differentiated and seamless experience across all Nordstrom channels,
our ability to execute and manage the costs of our evolving business model, including the execution of new supply chain capabilities and enhancement of existing ones, development of applications for electronic devices, improvement of customer-facing technologies, timely delivery of products purchased digitally, enhancement of inventory management systems, more fluid inventory availability between our digital channels and retail stores through our local market strategy, and greater consistency in marketing strategies,
our ability to respond to the business and retail environment, as well as fashion trends and consumer preferences, including changing expectations of service and experience in stores and online,
our ability to properly balance our investments in existing and new store locations, technology and supply chain facilities, especially our investments in our Nordstrom Men’s Store NYC and Nordstrom NYC and our Los Angeles market integration,
successful execution of our information technology strategy, including engagement with third-party service providers,
our ability to effectively utilize internal and third-party data in strategic planning and decision making,
our ability to maintain or expand our presence, including timely completion of construction associated with new, relocated and remodeled stores, and Supply Chain Network facilities, all of which may be impacted by third parties, consumer demand and other natural or man-made disruptions,
efficient and proper allocation of our capital resources,
effective inventory management processes and systems, fulfillment and supply chain processes and systems, disruptions in our supply chain and our ability to control costs,
the impact of any systems or network failures, cybersecurity and/or security breaches, including any security breach of our systems or those of a third-party provider that results in the theft, transfer or unauthorized disclosure of customer, employee or Company information or compliance with information security and privacy laws and regulations in the event of such an incident,
our ability to safeguard our reputation and maintain relationships with our vendors and third-party service providers,
our ability to maintain relationships with and motivate our employees and to effectively attract, develop and retain our future leaders,
our ability to realize the expected benefits, respond to potential risks and appropriately manage costs associated with our program agreement with TD Bank, N.A. (“TD”),
the effectiveness of planned advertising, marketing and promotional campaigns in the highly competitive and promotional retail industry,
market fluctuations, increases in operating costs, exit costs and overall liabilities and losses associated with owning and leasing real estate,
potential goodwill impairment charges, future impairment charges and fluctuations in the fair values of reporting units or of assets in the event projected financial results are not achieved within expected time frames,
compliance with debt and operating covenants, availability and cost of credit, changes in our credit rating and changes in interest rates,
the timing, price, manner and amounts of future share repurchases by us, if any, or any share issuances by us,
Economic and External
the impact of the seasonal nature of our business and cyclical customer spending,
the impact of economic and market conditions and the resultant impact on consumer spending and credit patterns,
the impact of economic, environmental or political conditions in the U.S. and countries where our third-party vendors operate,
weather conditions, natural disasters, health hazards, national security or other market and supply chain disruptions, including the effects of tariffs, or the prospects of these events and the resulting impact on consumer spending patterns or information technology systems and communications,


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Legal and Regulatory
our compliance with applicable domestic and international laws, regulations and ethical standards, including those related to employment and tax, information security and privacy, consumer credit and the outcome of any claims and litigation and resolution of such matters,
the impact of the current regulatory environment and financial system, health care and tax reforms,
the impact of changes in accounting rules and regulations, changes in our interpretation of the rules or regulations, or changes in underlying assumptions, estimates or judgments,
the impact of claims, litigation and regulatory investigations, including those related to information security, privacy and consumer credit.
Given these risks, uncertainties and other factors, you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Also, these forward-looking statements represent our estimates and assumptions only as of the date of this filing. You should read this Annual Report on Form 10-K completely and with the understanding that our actual future results may be materially different from what we expect. We hereby qualify our forward-looking statements by these cautionary statements. Except as required by law, we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements publicly, or to update the reasons actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements, even if new information becomes available in the future.
All references to “Nordstrom,” “we,” “us,” “our,” or the “Company” mean Nordstrom, Inc. and its subsidiaries.
In addition, statements that “we believe” and similar statements reflect our beliefs and opinions on the relevant subject. These statements are based upon information available to us as of the filing date of this Annual Report on Form 10-K, and while we believe such information forms a reasonable basis for such statements, such information may be limited or incomplete, and our statements should not be read to indicate that we have conducted an exhaustive inquiry into, or review of, all potentially available relevant information. These statements are inherently uncertain and investors are cautioned not to unduly rely upon these statements.


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PART I
Item 1. Business.
DESCRIPTION OF BUSINESS
Founded in 1901 as a retail shoe business in Seattle, Nordstrom later incorporated in Washington State in 1946 and went on to become one of the leading fashion retailers based in the U.S. We aspire to be the best fashion retailer in a digital world by remaining focused on our customers, serving them through our three strategic pillars: providing a compelling product offering, delivering outstanding services and experiences and leveraging the strength of the Nordstrom brand. We offer an extensive selection of high-quality brand-name and private label merchandise focused on apparel, shoes, cosmetics and accessories. No matter how customers choose to shop, we are committed to delivering the best possible service, product and experience, including alterations, dining and styling, to make shopping fun, personalized and convenient.
We invested early in our omni-channel capabilities, integrating our operations, merchandising and technology across our stores and online, in both our Full-Price and Off-Price businesses. Today, we have more than 60 combinations in which merchandise is ordered, fulfilled and delivered. Though this has enabled us to serve customers in multiple ways, we are focused on providing a seamless experience for our customer across stores and online. As a result of the evolution of our operations, our reportable segments have become progressively more integrated such that, in the first quarter of 2018, we changed our reportable segments to one reportable segment to align with how management views the results of our operations. For more information about our business and our reportable segments, see Item 7: Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations and Note 16: Segment Reporting in Item 8.
As of March 18, 2019, our reportable segment, Retail, includes:
Full-Price
115 Nordstrom-branded full-line stores in the U.S.
six full-line and six Rack stores in Canada
Full-Price Nordstrom.com website and mobile application
TrunkClub.com website and six Trunk Club clubhouses
three Jeffrey boutiques
three Nordstrom Local neighborhood hubs (“Nordstrom Local”)
Our Full-Price operating segment integrates Nordstrom full-line stores and Nordstrom.com to allow us to provide our customers with a seamless shopping experience. We engage with our customers on their terms, blurring the lines between the digital and in-store experience. Our customers can pick up online orders in our Nordstrom full-line stores if inventory is available or it can be shipped to that location. Full-Price also includes our full-line and Rack stores in Canada. We include our Canada operations in Full-Price as this is how we view and manage our operations internally. Trunk Club offers personalized styling services for men and women, which enables customers to shop and try on at home, paying only for what they decide to keep. Customers may also choose to shop using these personalized styling services in-person at our clubhouses. We provide customers with the same quality merchandise available at Nordstrom full-line stores and online. Nordstrom Local is a retail concept that is focused on services, providing customers convenient access to personal stylists, alterations, online orders and more. Trunk Club stylists are able to meet customers at select full-line and Nordstrom Local locations. We also leverage the expertise of our salespeople to enable customers to receive personalized product recommendations on their mobile phones through our digital Style Board selling tool. These capabilities allow us to better serve customers across various channels and improve sales.
Off-Price
239 Off-Price Nordstrom Rack stores in the U.S.
Off-Price Nordstromrack.com/HauteLook website and mobile application
two Last Chance clearance stores
In Off-Price, Nordstrom Rack and Nordstromrack.com purchase merchandise primarily from the same vendors carried in our Full-Price channel and also serve as outlets for clearance merchandise from the Full-Price channel. Nordstromrack.com/HauteLook offers both a persistent selection of Off-Price merchandise, as well as limited-time flash sale events on fashion and lifestyle brands, and is integrated with a single customer log-in, shared shopping cart and streamlined checkout process. Nordstromrack.com combines the technology expertise of HauteLook with the merchant expertise of Nordstrom Rack.
FISCAL YEAR
We operate on a 52/53-week fiscal year ending on the Saturday closest to January 31st. References to 2018 and all years except 2017 within this document are based on a 52-week fiscal year, while 2017 is based on a 53-week fiscal year.


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RETURN POLICY
We have a fair and reasonable approach to returns, handling them on a case-by-case basis with the ultimate objective of making our customers happy. We have no formal policy on how long we accept returns at our Nordstrom full-line stores or Nordstrom.com. Our goal is to take care of our customers, which includes making returns and exchanges easy, whether in stores or online, where we offer free shipping on purchases and returns. Trunk Club accepts returns within five days of delivery, which are free for the customer if the items are returned in the box provided by Trunk Club with the original price tag and packaging. Our Nordstrom Rack stores and Nordstromrack.com/HauteLook generally accept returns of apparel, footwear, accessories and HauteLook home products up to 45 days from the date of purchase or date of shipment with the original price tag and sales receipt. Off-Price merchandise can be returned by mail or at any Nordstrom Rack store location.
SEASONALITY
Our business, like that of other retailers, is subject to seasonal fluctuations. Our sales are typically higher during our Anniversary Sale in July and the holidays in the fourth quarter. Our Anniversary Sale shifted to the second quarter in 2018 compared with the second and third quarters in 2017. Results for any one quarter are not indicative of the results that may be achieved for a full fiscal year.
LOYALTY PROGRAM
We evolved our customer loyalty program with the launch of The Nordy Club in October 2018, which incorporates a traditional point system and the favorite benefits of our previous program, while providing customers exclusive access to products and events, enhanced services, personalized experiences and more convenient ways to shop. Customers accumulate points based on their level of spending and type of participation. Upon reaching certain point thresholds, customers receive Nordstrom Notes (“Notes”), which can be redeemed for goods or services offered at Nordstrom full-line stores, Nordstrom.com, Nordstrom Rack and Nordstromrack.com/HauteLook. Nordstrom cardmembers can also earn rewards at Trunk Club. The Nordy Club member benefits will vary based on the level of customer spend, and include Bonus Points days and shopping and fashion events.
We offer customers access to a variety of payment products and services, including a selection of Nordstrom-branded Visa® credit cards in the U.S. and Canada, as well as a Nordstrom-branded private label credit card for Nordstrom purchases. When customers use a Nordstrom-branded credit or debit card, they also participate in The Nordy Club and receive additional benefits, which can vary depending on the level of spend, including early access to the Anniversary Sale, Nordstrom to You (an in-home stylist) and incremental accumulation of points toward Notes. See Note 3: Credit Card Receivable Transaction in Item 8.
COMPETITIVE CONDITIONS
We operate in a highly competitive business environment. We compete with other international, national, regional and local retailers, including internet-based businesses, omni-channel department stores, specialty stores, off-price stores and boutiques, which may carry similar lines of merchandise. Our specific competitors vary from market to market. We believe the keys to competing in our industry are what will always matter most to our customers: providing compelling product and outstanding service backed by people who care, both digitally and in stores. This includes serving customers on their terms, by providing a seamless digital and physical experience, offering compelling, curated and quality products at multiple price points, and strategically partnering with relevant and limited distribution brands, all in top markets.
SUPPLY CHAIN NETWORK
Our “Supply Chain Network” consists of:
fulfillment centers that process and ship orders to our customers, located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania; and San Bernardino, California,
distribution centers that process and ship merchandise to our stores and other facilities and
future Omni-channel centers that both fulfill customer orders and ship merchandise to our stores. These will open in 2019 and include large-scale centers and smaller local hubs (Local Omni-channel Hub).
We have expanded our Supply Chain Network facilities and enhanced our inventory management systems to support our omni-channel capabilities and provide greater access to merchandise selection and faster delivery. We select locations and customize inventory allocations to enable merchandise to flow more efficiently and quickly to our customers.
Full-Price online purchases are primarily shipped to our customers from our Fulfillment Centers but may also be shipped from our Nordstrom full-line stores or Omni-channel centers. Full-Price in-store purchases are primarily fulfilled from that store’s inventory, but when inventory is unavailable at that store, it may also be shipped to our customers from our Fulfillment Centers, Omni-channel centers, or from other Nordstrom full-line stores. Off-Price online purchases are shipped to our customers from our Fulfillment Centers. Both channels selectively use vendor dropship to supplement their online offerings, which are then shipped directly from the vendor to the end customer.


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Our first large-scale Omni-channel center in Riverside, California will open in late 2019 and will initially support our Full-Price customers in the West Coast region. Off-Price inventory and fulfillment will be added to this facility in the future. We also plan to open a smaller Local Omni-channel Hub in Torrance, California in 2019, which will support the greater Los Angeles market as part of our new local market strategy and will have highly customized inventory that serves the specialized needs of that market.
INVENTORY
We plan our merchandise purchases and receipts to coincide with expected sales trends. For instance, our merchandise purchases and receipts increase prior to our Anniversary Sale, which has historically extended over the last two weeks of July. We also purchase and receive a larger amount of merchandise in the fall as we prepare for the holiday shopping season (from late November through December). At Nordstrom Rack, we also invest in pack and hold inventory, which involves the strategic purchase of merchandise from some of our top Full-Price brands in advance of the upcoming selling seasons, to take advantage of favorable buying opportunities. This inventory is typically held for six months on average.
In order to offer merchandise that our customers want, we purchase from a wide variety of high-quality domestic and foreign suppliers. We also have arrangements with agents and contract manufacturers to produce our private label merchandise. We expect our suppliers to meet our “Nordstrom Partnership Guidelines,” which address our corporate social responsibility standards for matters such as legal and regulatory compliance, labor, health and safety and the environment. This is available on our website at Nordstrom.com.
EMPLOYEES
During 2018, we employed approximately 71,000 employees on a full- or part-time basis. Due to the seasonal nature of our business, employment increased to approximately 76,000 employees in July 2018 and 74,000 in December 2018. All of our employees are non-union. We believe our relationship with our employees is good.
TRADEMARKS
Our most notable trademarks include Nordstrom, Nordstrom Rack, HauteLook, Trunk Club, Halogen, BP., Caslon, Zella, Leith, 1901, Treasure & Bond, Tucker+Tate and 14th & Union. Each of our trademarks is renewable indefinitely, provided that it is still used in commerce at the time of the renewal.
SEC FILINGS
We file annual, quarterly and current reports, proxy statements and other documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). The SEC maintains a website at www.sec.gov that contains reports, proxy and information statements, and other information regarding issuers that file with the SEC.
WEBSITE ACCESS
Our website address is Nordstrom.com. Our annual and quarterly reports on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q (including related filings in eXtensible Business Reporting Language (“XBRL”) format), current reports on Form 8-K, proxy statements, our executives’ statements of changes in beneficial ownership of securities on Form 4 and amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”) are available for free on or through our website as soon as reasonably practicable after we electronically file the report with or furnish it to the SEC. Interested parties may also access a webcast of quarterly earnings conference calls and other financial events through our website.
CORPORATE GOVERNANCE
We have a long-standing commitment to upholding a high level of ethical standards. In addition, as the listing standards of the New York Stock Exchange (“NYSE”) and the rules of the SEC require, we have adopted Codes of Business Conduct and Ethics for our employees, officers and directors (“Codes of Ethics”) and Corporate Governance Guidelines. Our Codes of Ethics, Corporate Governance Guidelines and Committee Charters for the Audit and Finance, Compensation, Corporate Governance and Nominating, and Technology Committees are posted on our website. Any amendments to these documents, or waivers of the requirements they contain, will also be available on our website.
For printed versions of these items or any other inquiries, please contact:
Nordstrom Investor Relations
1700 Seventh Avenue, Suite 1500
Seattle, Washington 98101
(206) 303-3200
invrelations@nordstrom.com


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Item 1A. Risk Factors.
Our business faces many risks. We believe the risks described below outline the items of most concern to us. In evaluating Nordstrom and our business, you should carefully consider the following factors, in addition to the other information in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. Before you buy our common stock or invest in our debt, you should know that making such an investment involves risks including, but not limited to, the risks described below. Any one of the following risks could harm our business, financial condition, results of operations, or reputation, which could cause our stock price to decline or a default on our debt payments, and you may lose all or a part of your investment. Additional risks, trends and uncertainties not presently known to us or that we currently believe are immaterial may also harm our business, financial condition, results of operations or reputation.
RISKS DUE TO STRATEGIC AND OPERATIONAL FACTORS
Our inability to successfully execute our customer strategy or evolve our business model could negatively impact our business and future profitability and growth.
The retail environment is rapidly evolving with customer shopping preferences continuing to shift to digital channels. Computers and mobile electronic devices allow customers to browse and transact anywhere and anytime. In this changing landscape, we continue to focus on better serving our customers through our three strategic pillars: providing a compelling product offering, delivering exceptional services and experiences, and leveraging the strength of the Nordstrom brand. Our customer strategy focuses on providing a differentiated and seamless experience in a digital world across all Nordstrom channels, including mobile and social channels. Our “One Nordstrom” model, in which engagement across our four boxes of Full-Price, Off-Price, Stores and Digital encourages more visits and more spend, allows for our company as a whole to be greater than the sum of the parts. Our local market strategy is an example of this where we bring all of our assets together in one market to serve customers when, where and how they want by connecting physical and digital assets.
Our focus on the customer will require us to execute new supply chain capabilities and enhance existing ones, develop applications for electronic devices, improve customer-facing technology, deliver digitally purchased products timely, enhance inventory management systems, allow greater and more fluid inventory availability between digital and retail locations through our local market strategy, and create greater consistency in marketing strategies. In addition, these strategies will require further expansion and reliance on data science and analytics across all our channels. This business model has a high variable cost structure driven by fulfillment and marketing costs and will continue to require investments in cross-channel operations and supporting technologies.
With the accelerated pace of change in the retail environment, we may not be able to meet our customers’ changing expectations of how they shop in stores or through digital experiences. If we do not successfully implement our customer strategy, including our local market strategy, or expand our digital and supply chain initiatives, or do not seamlessly integrate or maintain them properly, we may fall short of our customer’s expectations, impacting our brand, reputation, profitability and growth. In addition, if customers shift to digital channels at a different pace than we anticipate, we may need to quickly modify our initiatives and investments, which may adversely impact our profitability and harm our competitive position. We also may not gather accurate and relevant data or effectively utilize that data, which may impact our strategic planning, marketing and loyalty programs and our overall decision making.
Our business could suffer if we do not appropriately assess and react to competitive market forces and changes in customer behavior.
We compete with other international, national, regional and local retailers, including internet-based businesses, omni-channel department stores, specialty stores, off-price stores and boutiques, which may carry similar lines of merchandise. Digital channels continue to facilitate comparison shopping, intensifying competition in the retail market, and marketing digitally is controlled by a few key platforms. If we fail to adequately anticipate and respond to customer and market dynamics, we may lose market share or our ability to remain competitive, causing our sales and profitability to suffer. If our loyalty marketing, advertising and promotional campaigns that attract customers through various programs and media, including social media, database marketing and print, are unsuccessful in influencing consumer behavior, or if our expenses increase and our competitors are more effective with their programs than we are, our growth and profitability could suffer. If we do not properly allocate our capital between the store and digital environment, or between the Full-Price and Off-Price channels to accommodate changes in consumer behavior, or adjust the effectiveness and efficiency of our stores and digital channels, our growth and profitability could suffer.


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Our customer relationships and sales may be negatively impacted if we do not anticipate and respond to consumer preferences and fashion trends or manage inventory levels appropriately.
Our ability to predict or respond to constantly changing fashion trends, consumer preferences and spending patterns significantly impacts our sales and operating results. If we do not identify and respond to emerging trends in consumer spending and preferences quickly enough, we may harm our ability to retain our existing customers or attract new customers. Ensuring we optimize our inventory and improve the planning and management of inventory through use of data and analytics is critical to serving the customer, driving growth and maximizing profitability. If we purchase too much inventory, we may be forced to sell our merchandise at lower average margins, which could harm our business. Conversely, if we fail to purchase enough merchandise, we may lose opportunities for additional sales and potentially harm relationships with our customers.
The investment in existing and new locations, including our Nordstrom Men’s Store NYC and Nordstrom NYC and Supply Chain Network facilities, may not achieve our expected returns.
The locations of our existing stores, planned store openings and Supply Chain Network facilities are assessed based upon desirability, demographics and retail environment. This involves certain risks, including properly balancing our capital investments between new stores, relocations, remodels, fulfillment capabilities, technology and digital channels, assessing the suitability of locations, especially in new domestic and international markets, and constructing, furnishing and supplying a store or facility in a timely and cost-effective manner, which may be affected by the actions of third parties, including but not limited to private entities and local, state or federal regulatory agencies. In particular, we opened our Nordstrom Men’s Store NYC in April 2018 and plan to open Nordstrom NYC in October 2019.
We open our stores in the Spring and Fall, and a delay in a store opening could negatively impact sales and profitability. Sales at our stores may not meet projections, particularly in light of the changing trends between digital and brick-and-mortar shopping channels, which could adversely affect our return on investment. As we enter new domestic and international markets, such as Manhattan and Canada, our efforts will require additional management attention and resources and may distract us from executing our core operations. If we do not select effective locations for our Supply Chain Network facilities, we could incur significantly higher costs and shipping times that do not meet customer expectations, which in turn could have a material adverse effect on our business.
Even if we take appropriate measures to safeguard our information, network and environment from security breaches, our customers, employees and business could still be exposed to risk.
Nordstrom, our subsidiaries and third-party providers access, collect, store and transmit customers’ and employees’ sensitive, confidential or personal data or information, consumer preferences and credit card information that is subject to privacy and security laws and regulations, as well as our financial and strategic data. Security breaches of this information may be the result of intentional or inadvertent activities by our employees, contractors or by third-party providers that may result in the unauthorized release of customer or employee personal or confidential information. In addition, the regulatory environment surrounding information security, cybersecurity and privacy is increasingly demanding, with new and constantly changing requirements imposed by local, state, federal and foreign governments.
Worldwide regulatory authorities are considering and have approved various legislative proposals concerning privacy and data protection, which continue to evolve and apply to our business. For example, following the European Union’s adoption of the General Data Protection Regulation, a number of jurisdictions where we do business have enacted or are considering new privacy and data protection laws. Complying with these changing laws may cause us to incur substantial costs, which could have an adverse effect on our business and results of operations. Further, failure to comply with existing or new laws may result in significant penalties or orders to stop the alleged noncompliant activity.
We have taken measures to help prevent a breach of our information and comply with cybersecurity requirements by implementing safeguards and procedures designed to protect the security, confidentiality and access of such information. In addition, where possible, we require our third-party providers to implement administrative, physical and technical safeguards and procedures to protect the security, confidentiality and availability of our information. We have suffered breaches of our cybersecurity in the past and are at risk for such breaches in the future. Any measures we or our third-party providers have implemented to prevent intentional or inadvertent information security breaches may not be completely effective and may nevertheless result in the unauthorized release of customer, employee or Company confidential information. Concerns about our practices with regard to the collection, use, retention, security or disclosure of personal information or other privacy-related matters, even if unfounded, could damage our reputation and adversely affect our operating results.
Security breaches and cyber incidents and their remediation, whether at Nordstrom, our third-party providers or other retailers, could expose us to a risk of loss or misappropriation of personal or confidential information, litigation, investigation, regulatory enforcement action, fines, information technology system failures or network disruptions, potential liability, reputation damage and loss of customers’, employees’ or third-party providers’ trust and business, any of which could adversely impact our reputation, competitiveness and financial performance. In the event of a significant security breach or cyberattack, we maintain insurance that may mitigate damages such as financial losses and remediation costs. Other impacts include higher insurance deductibles, increased insurance premiums, and increased cyber-protection costs, which may include the costs associated with making organizational changes, deploying additional personnel and protection technologies, training employees and engaging third party experts and consultants.


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Our business may be impacted by information technology system failures or network disruptions.
Our ability to transact with customers and operate our business depends on the efficient operation of various information systems, including data centers, hardware, software and applications, to manage certain aspects of our Company, including store and online transactions, logistics and communication, inventory and reporting systems. We seek to build quality systems or select reputable system vendors and we implement procedures intended to enable us to protect our systems when we modify them. We test our systems to expose and address vulnerabilities, and we train our employees regarding practices to protect and maintain the safety of our systems.
There are inherent risks associated with modifying or replacing systems, and with new or changed relationships, including accurately capturing and maintaining data, realizing the expected benefit of the change and managing the potential disruption of the operation of the systems as the changes are implemented. Potential issues associated with implementing technology initiatives and the time and resources required to optimize the benefits of new elements of our systems and infrastructure could reduce the efficiency of our operations in the short term.
If we encounter an interruption or deterioration in critical systems or processes or experience the loss of critical data, which may result from security or cybersecurity threats or attacks, natural disasters, accidents, power disruptions, telecommunications failures, acts of terrorism or war, computer viruses, physical or electronic break-ins or third-party or other disruptions, our business could be harmed or our digital activity may decrease because it is more difficult to use. Depending on the severity of the failure, our disaster recovery plans may be inadequate or ineffective. These events could also damage our reputation, result in loss of sales and be expensive to remedy.
Improvements to our merchandise buying and fulfillment processes and systems could adversely affect our business if not successfully executed.
We are making investments to improve our merchandise planning, procurement, allocation and fulfillment capabilities through changes in personnel, processes, location logistics and technology over a period of several years. If we encounter challenges associated with change management, the ability to hire and retain key personnel involved in these efforts, implementation of associated information technology or adoption of new processes, features or capabilities, our ability to continue to successfully execute our strategy or evolve our strategy with changes in the retail environment could be adversely affected. As a result, we may not derive the expected benefits to our sales and profitability, or we may incur increased costs relative to our current expectations.
Our customer, employee and vendor relationships could be negatively affected if we fail to maintain our corporate culture and reputation.
We have a well-recognized culture and reputation that consumers may associate with a high level of integrity, customer service and quality merchandise, and it is one of the reasons customers shop with us and employees choose us as a place of employment. Any significant damage to our reputation, including damages arising from factors outside our control or on social media, could diminish customer trust, weaken our vendor relationships, reduce employee morale and productivity and lead to difficulties in recruiting and retaining qualified employees. Additionally, management may not accurately assess the impact of significant legislative changes, including those that relate to privacy, employment matters and health care, impacting our relationship with our customers or our workforce and adversely affecting our sales and operations.
If we do not effectively design and implement our strategic and business planning processes to attract, retain, train and develop talent and future leaders, our business may suffer.
We rely on the experience of our senior management, who have specific knowledge relating to us and our industry that is difficult to replace, and the talents of our workforce to execute our business strategies and objectives. We have succession plans in place and our Board of Directors reviews these succession plans. If our succession plans do not adequately cover significant and unanticipated turnover, the loss of the services of any of these individuals, or any resulting negative perceptions of our business, could damage our reputation and our business.
Our program agreement with TD could adversely impact our business.
The program agreement with TD was consummated on terms that allow us to maintain customer-facing activities while TD provides Nordstrom-branded payment methods and payment processing services. If we fail to meet certain service levels, TD has the right to assume certain individual servicing functions including managing accounts and collection activities. If we lose control of such activities and functions, if we do not successfully respond to potential risks and appropriately manage potential costs associated with the program agreement with TD, or if these transactions negatively impact the customer service associated with our cards, resulting in harm to our business reputation and competitive position, our operations, cash flows and returns to shareholders could be adversely affected. If TD became unwilling or unable to provide these services or if there are changes to the risk management policies implemented under our program agreement with TD, our results may be negatively impacted. If we lose control over certain servicing functions and TD is unable to successfully manage accounts and collection activities, it may heighten the risk of credit losses.


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Ownership and leasing real estate exposes us to possible liabilities and losses.
We own or lease the land, buildings and equipment for all of our stores and Supply Chain Network facilities and are therefore subject to all of the risks associated with owning and leasing real estate. In particular, the value of the assets could decrease, their operating costs could increase, or a store or facility may not be opened as planned due to changes in the real estate market, demographic trends, site competition, dependence on third-party performance or overall economic environment. Additionally, we are potentially subject to liability for environmental conditions, exit costs associated with disposal of a store and commitments to pay base rent for the entire lease term or operate a store for the duration of an operating covenant.
Investment and partnerships in new business strategies and acquisitions could disrupt our core business.
We have invested in or are pursuing strategic growth opportunities, which may include acquisitions of, or investments in, other businesses, as well as new technologies or other investments to provide a superior customer shopping experience in our stores and digital channels. Additionally, our business model will continue to rely more on partnerships with third parties for certain strategic initiatives and technologies. If these investments, acquisitions or partnerships do not perform as expected or create operational difficulties, we may record impairment charges. If we do not realize our anticipated return on investments, our profitability and growth could be adversely affected.
If we fail to appropriately manage our capital, we may negatively impact our operations and shareholder return.
We utilize working capital to finance our operations, make capital expenditures and acquisitions, manage our debt levels and return value to our shareholders through dividends and share repurchases. Changes in the credit and capital markets, including market disruptions, limited liquidity and interest rate fluctuations, may increase the cost of financing or restrict access to a potential source of liquidity. A deterioration in our capital structure or the quality and stability of our earnings could result in noncompliance with our debt covenants or a downgrade of our credit rating, constraining the financing available to our Company. If our access to financing is restricted or our borrowing costs increase, our operations and financial condition could be adversely impacted. Further, if we do not properly allocate our capital to maximize returns, our operations, cash flows and returns to shareholders could be adversely affected.
The concentration of stock ownership in a small number of our shareholders could limit our shareholders’ ability to influence corporate matters.
We have regularly reported in our annual proxy statements the holdings of members of the Nordstrom family, including Bruce A. Nordstrom, our former Co-President and Chairman of the Board, his sister Anne E. Gittinger and members of the Nordstrom family within our Executive Team. According to the Schedule 13D/A filed with the SEC on February 4, 2019, these individuals beneficially owned an aggregate of approximately 31% of our common stock. As a result, either individually or acting together, they may be able to exercise considerable influence over matters requiring shareholder approval. In addition, as reported in our periodic filings, our Board of Directors has from time to time authorized share repurchases. While these share repurchases may be offset in part by share issuances under our equity incentive plans and as consideration for acquisitions, the repurchases may nevertheless have the effect of increasing the overall percentage ownership held by these shareholders. The corporate law of the State of Washington, where the Company is incorporated, provides that approval of a merger or similar significant corporate transaction requires the affirmative vote of two-thirds of a company’s outstanding shares. The beneficial ownership of these shareholders may have the effect of discouraging offers to acquire us, delay or otherwise prevent a significant corporate transaction because the consummation of any such transaction would likely require the approval of these shareholders. As a result, the market price of our common stock could be affected.
RISKS DUE TO ECONOMIC AND EXTERNAL MARKET FACTORS
Our revenues and operating results are affected by the seasonal nature of our business and cyclical trends in consumer spending.
Our business, like that of other retailers, is subject to seasonal fluctuations and cyclical trends in consumer spending. Due to our Anniversary Sale in July and the holidays in the fourth quarter, our sales are typically higher in the second and fourth quarters than in the first and third quarters of the fiscal year. Any factor that negatively impacts these selling seasons could have an adverse effect on our results of operations for the entire year. To provide shareholders a better understanding of management’s expectations surrounding results, we provide public guidance on our expected operating and financial results for future periods comprised of forward-looking statements subject to certain risks and uncertainties.
A downturn in economic conditions and other external market factors could have a significant adverse effect on our business and stock price.
During economic downturns, fewer customers may shop for the high-quality items in our stores and on our websites, as these products may be seen as discretionary, and those who do shop may limit the amount of their purchases. This reduced demand may lead to lower sales, higher markdowns and an overly promotional environment or increased marketing and promotional spending.
Additionally, factors such as results differing from guidance, changes in sales and operating income in the peak seasons, changes in our market valuations, performance results for the general retail industry, announcements by us or our industry peers or changes in analysts’ recommendations may cause volatility in the price of our common stock and our shareholder returns.


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Our stores located in shopping centers may be adversely affected by any declines in consumer traffic of shopping centers.
The majority of our stores are located within shopping centers and benefit from the abilities that we and other anchor tenants have to generate consumer traffic. A substantial decline in shopping center traffic, the development of new shopping centers, the lack of availability of favorable locations within existing or new shopping centers, the success of individual shopping centers and the success of other anchor tenants may negatively impact our ability to maintain or grow our sales in existing stores, as well as our ability to open new stores, which could have an adverse effect on our financial condition or results of operations.
Our business depends on third parties for the production, supply or delivery of goods, and a disruption could result in lost sales or increased costs.
Timely receipts of quality merchandise from third parties is critical to our business. Our process to identify qualified vendors and access quality products in an efficient manner on acceptable terms and cost can be complex. Violations of law with respect to quality and safety by our importers, manufacturers or distributors could result in delays in shipments and receipt of goods or damage our reputation, resulting in lost sales. These vendors may experience difficulties due to economic, political or environmental conditions or the countries in which merchandise is manufactured could become subject to new trade restrictions, including increased customs restrictions, tariffs or quotas. Additionally, changes in tax and trade policies that impact the retail industry, such as increased taxation on imported goods, could have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations and liquidity.
The results from our credit card operations could be adversely affected by changes in market conditions or laws.
Revenues earned under our program agreement with TD are indirectly subject to economic and market conditions that are beyond our control, including, but not limited to, interest rates, consumer credit availability, demand for credit, consumer debt levels, payment patterns, delinquency rates, employment trends, laws and other factors. Changes in these economic and market conditions could impair our revenues and profitability.
Our business and operations could be materially and adversely affected by supply chain disruptions, port disruptions, severe weather patterns, natural disasters, widespread pandemics and other natural or man-made disruptions.
These disruptions could cause, among other things, a decrease in consumer spending that would negatively impact our sales, staffing shortages in our stores, Supply Chain Network facilities or corporate offices, interruptions in the flow of merchandise to our stores, disruptions in the operations of our merchandise vendors or property developers, increased costs and a negative impact on our reputation and long-term growth plans. We have a significant amount of our total sales, stores and square footage in the west coast of the United States, particularly in California, which increases our exposure to any market-disrupting conditions in this region.
RISKS DUE TO LEGAL AND REGULATORY FACTORS
We are subject to certain laws, litigation, regulatory matters and ethical standards, and compliance or our failure to comply with or adequately address developments as they arise could adversely affect our reputation and operations.
Our policies, procedures and practices and the technology we implement are designed to comply with applicable federal, state, local and foreign laws, tariffs, rules and regulations, including those imposed by federal, state and local jurisdictions, the SEC, consumer protection and other regulatory agencies, the marketplace, and foreign countries, as well as responsible business, social and environmental practices, all of which may change from time to time. Compliance with laws and regulations and/or significant legislative changes may cause our business to be adversely impacted, or even limit or restrict the activities of our business. In addition, if we fail to comply with applicable laws and regulations or implement responsible business, social, environmental and supply chain practices, we could be subject to damage to our reputation, class action lawsuits, regulatory investigations, legal and settlement costs, charges and payments, civil and criminal liability, increased cost of regulatory compliance, losing our ability to accept credit and debit card payments from our customers, restatements of our financial statements, disruption of our business and loss of customers. New and emerging privacy and data protection laws may increase compliance expenses and limit business opportunities and strategic initiatives, including customer engagement. Any required changes to our employment practices could result in the loss of employees, reduced sales, increased employment costs, low employee morale and harm to our business and results of operations. In addition, political and economic factors could lead to unfavorable changes in federal, state and foreign tax laws, which may affect our tax assets or liabilities and adversely affect our results of operations. We are also regularly involved in various litigation matters that arise in the ordinary course of business. Litigation or regulatory developments could adversely affect our business and financial condition.
Changes to accounting rules and regulations could affect our financial results or financial condition.
Accounting principles and related pronouncements, implementation guidelines and interpretations with regard to a wide variety of accounting matters that are relevant to our business, including, but not limited to, revenue recognition, merchandise inventories, leasing, impairment of long-lived assets and tax matters are highly complex and involve subjective assumptions, estimates and judgments. Changes in these rules and regulations, changes in our interpretation of the rules or regulations or changes in underlying assumptions, estimates or judgments could adversely affect our financial performance or financial position.


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Item 1B. Unresolved Staff Comments.
None.
Item 2. Properties.
The following table summarizes the number of retail stores we own or lease, and the percentage of total store square footage represented by each listed category as of February 2, 2019:
 
 
Number of stores
 
 
 
 
Full-Price1

 
Off-Price2

 
% of total store
square footage

Leased stores on leased land
 
43

 
239

 
44
%
Owned stores on leased land
 
63

 

 
37
%
Owned stores on owned land
 
32

 
1

 
18
%
Partly owned and partly leased store
 
1

 

 
1
%
Total
 
139

 
240

 
100
%
1 Full-Price includes U.S. & Canada full-line stores, Canada Rack stores, Trunk Club clubhouses, Jeffrey boutiques and Nordstrom Local.  
2 Off-Price includes U.S. Rack stores and Last Chance clearance stores.
The following table summarizes our store count and square footage activity:
 
 
Store count
 
Square footage (000’s)
Fiscal year
 
2018

 
2017

 
2016

 
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Total, beginning of year
 
366

 
349

 
323

 
30,218

 
29,792

 
28,610

Store openings1:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Full-Price2
 
10

 
2

 
5

 
277

 
184

 
629

Off-Price3
 
6

 
17

 
22

 
170

 
559

 
702

Stores closed
 
(3
)
 
(2
)
 
(1
)
 
(280
)
 
(317
)
 
(149
)
Total, end of year
 
379

 
366

 
349

 
30,385

 
30,218

 
29,792

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Relocations and other1
 
1

 
3

 
3

 
(5
)
 
33

 
(9
)
1 Store opening square footage includes adjustments due to store relocations or remodels.
2 Full-Price includes U.S. & Canada full-line stores, Canada Rack stores, Trunk Club clubhouses, Jeffrey boutiques and Nordstrom Local. Store openings for 2018 consist of one full-line store, six Canada Rack stores, one Jeffrey boutique and two Nordstrom Locals.
3 Off-Price includes U.S. Rack stores and Last Chance clearance stores.


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The following table lists our retail store count and square footage by state/province as of February 2, 2019:
Business
 
Full-Price1
 
Off-Price2
 
Total
 
 
Count

Square Footage
(000’s)

 
Count

Square Footage
(000’s)

 
Count

Square Footage
(000’s)

U.S.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alabama
 


 
1

35

 
1

35

Alaska
 
1

97

 
1

35

 
2

132

Arizona
 
2

384

 
9

313

 
11

697

California
 
35

5,225

 
53

1,974

 
88

7,199

Colorado
 
3

559

 
6

213

 
9

772

Connecticut
 
1

189

 
1

36

 
2

225

Delaware
 
1

127

 
1

32

 
2

159

Florida
 
9

1,389

 
16

545

 
25

1,934

Georgia
 
3

395

 
4

153

 
7

548

Hawaii
 
1

195

 
2

78

 
3

273

Idaho
 


 
1

37

 
1

37

Illinois
 
5

973

 
16

594

 
21

1,567

Indiana
 
1

134

 
2

60

 
3

194

Iowa
 


 
1

35

 
1

35

Kansas
 
1

219

 
1

35

 
2

254

Kentucky
 


 
1

33

 
1

33

Louisiana
 


 
3

90

 
3

90

Maine
 


 
1

30

 
1

30

Maryland
 
4

765

 
5

186

 
9

951

Massachusetts
 
5

604

 
7

266

 
12

870

Michigan
 
3

552

 
5

178

 
8

730

Minnesota
 
2

380

 
5

173

 
7

553

Missouri
 
2

342

 
2

69

 
4

411

Nevada
 
1

207

 
3

101

 
4

308

New Jersey
 
5

991

 
8

284

 
13

1,275

New Mexico
 


 
1

34

 
1

34

New York
 
5

547

 
12

433

 
17

980

North Carolina
 
2

300

 
2

74

 
4

374

Ohio
 
3

549

 
6

224

 
9

773

Oklahoma
 


 
2

67

 
2

67

Oregon
 
3

484

 
6

218

 
9

702

Pennsylvania
 
2

381

 
7

240

 
9

621

Puerto Rico
 
1

143

 


 
1

143

Rhode Island
 


 
1

38

 
1

38

South Carolina
 


 
3

101

 
3

101

Tennessee
 
1

145

 
2

69

 
3

214

Texas
 
10

1,580

 
18

613

 
28

2,193

Utah
 
2

277

 
4

126

 
6

403

Virginia
 
4

746

 
7

268

 
11

1,014

Washington
 
7

1,392

 
9

354

 
16

1,746

Washington D.C.
 
1

8

 
3

107

 
4

115

Wisconsin
 
1

150

 
2

67

 
3

217

Canada
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alberta
 
3

208

 


 
3

208

British Columbia
 
1

231

 


 
1

231

Ontario
 
8

899

 


 
8

899

Total
 
139

21,767

 
240

8,618

 
379

30,385

1 Full-Price includes U.S. & Canada full-line stores, Canada Rack stores, Trunk Club clubhouses, Jeffrey boutiques and Nordstrom Local.
2 Off-Price includes U.S. Rack stores and Last Chance clearance stores.


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Our headquarters are located in Seattle, Washington, where our offices consist of both leased and owned space. We also have:
six owned distribution centers (Portland, Oregon; Dubuque, Iowa; Ontario, California; Newark, California; Upper Marlboro, Maryland and Gainesville, Florida),
two owned fulfillment centers (Cedar Rapids, Iowa and Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania),
one leased fulfillment center (San Bernardino, California),
four leased office facilities (Chicago, Illinois; Centennial, Colorado; Los Angeles, California and New York City, New York) and
In 2019, we will be opening:
one leased Omni-channel center (Riverside, California) and
one leased Local Omni-channel Hub (Torrance, California)
two full-line stores in the U.S.
five Nordstrom Rack stores in the U.S.
Item 3. Legal Proceedings.
We are subject from time to time to various claims and lawsuits arising in the ordinary course of business, including lawsuits alleging violations of state and/or federal wage and hour and other employment laws, privacy and other consumer-based claims. Some of these lawsuits include certified classes of litigants, or purport or may be determined to be class or collective actions and seek substantial damages or injunctive relief, or both, and some may remain unresolved for several years. We believe the recorded accruals in our Consolidated Financial Statements are adequate in light of the probable and estimable liabilities. As of the date of this report, we do not believe any currently identified claim, proceeding or litigation, either alone or in the aggregate, will have a material impact on our results of operations, financial position or cash flows. Since these matters are subject to inherent uncertainties, our view of them may change in the future.
Item 4. Mine Safety Disclosures.
None.


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PART II
Item 5. Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Shareholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities.
MARKET AND SHAREHOLDER INFORMATION
Our common stock, without par value, is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “JWN.” The approximate number of holders of common stock as of March 11, 2019 was 129,000, based upon the number of registered and beneficial shareholders and the number of employee shareholders in the Nordstrom 401(k) Plan. On this date, we had 155,002,755 shares of common stock outstanding.
For cash dividends declared and paid per share for each fiscal quarter in 2018 and 2017, refer to Note 17: Selected Quarterly Data in Item 8.
SHARE REPURCHASES
(Dollar and share amounts in millions, except per share amounts)
The following is a summary of our fourth quarter share repurchases:
 
Total Number
of Shares
Purchased

 
Average
Price Paid
Per Share

 
Total Number of Shares Purchased as Part of Publicly Announced Plans or Programs

 
Approximate Dollar Value
of Shares that May
Yet Be Purchased Under
the Plans or Programs

November 2018
(November 4, 2018 to December 1, 2018)
2.0

 

$52.78

 
2.0

 

$1,336

December 2018
(December 2, 2018 to January 5, 2019)
4.3

 

$47.15

 
4.3

 

$1,133

January 2019
(January 6, 2019 to February 2, 2019)
5.1

 

$46.82

 
5.1

 

$893

Total
11.4

 

$47.97

 
11.4

 
 
In August 2018, our Board of Directors authorized a new program to repurchase up to $1,500 of our outstanding common stock, with no expiration date. The actual timing, price, manner and amounts of future share repurchases, if any, will be subject to market and economic conditions and applicable SEC rules.


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STOCK PRICE PERFORMANCE
The following graph compares the cumulative total return of Nordstrom common stock, Standard & Poor’s Retail Index (“S&P Retail”) and Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (“S&P 500”) for each of the last five fiscal years, ending February 2, 2019. The Retail Index is composed of 27 retail companies, including Nordstrom, representing an industry group of the S&P 500. The following graph assumes an initial investment of $100 each in Nordstrom common stock, S&P Retail and the S&P 500 on February 1, 2014 and assumes reinvestment of dividends.
chart-1a2fb8cf89855f7c87e.jpg
End of fiscal year
2013

 
2014

 
2015

 
2016

 
2017

 
2018

Nordstrom common stock
100

 
136

 
96

 
87

 
100

 
97

S&P Retail
100

 
123

 
143

 
169

 
239

 
253

S&P 500
100

 
117

 
115

 
139

 
171

 
171



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Item 6. Selected Financial Data.
(Dollars in millions except per square foot and per share amounts)
The following selected financial data are derived from the audited Consolidated Financial Statements and should be read in conjunction with Item 1A: Risk Factors, Item 7: Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations and Item 8: Financial Statements and Supplementary Data of this Annual Report on Form 10-K.
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

 
2015

 
2014

Earnings Results
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Net sales

$15,480



$15,137



$14,498

 

$14,095

 

$13,110

Credit card revenues, net1
380


341


259

 
342

 
396

Gross profit
5,325


5,247


5,058

 
4,927

 
4,704

Selling, general and administrative (“SG&A”) expenses2
(4,868
)
 
(4,662
)
 
(4,315
)
 
(4,168
)
 
(3,777
)
Earnings before interest and income taxes (“EBIT”)
837


926


805

 
1,101

 
1,323

Net earnings
564


437


354

 
600

 
720

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Balance Sheet and Cash Flow Data
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Cash and cash equivalents

$957

 

$1,181

 

$1,007

 

$595

 

$827

Merchandise inventories
1,978


2,027

 
1,896

 
1,945

 
1,733

Land, property and equipment, net
3,921


3,939

 
3,897

 
3,735

 
3,340

Total assets1
7,886


8,115

 
7,858

 
7,698

 
9,245

Total long-term debt1
2,685


2,737

 
2,774

 
2,805

 
3,131

Net cash provided by operating activities1
1,296


1,400

 
1,658

 
2,470

 
1,243

Capital expenditures
654

 
731

 
846

 
1,082

 
861

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Performance Metrics
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Net sales increase
2.3
%
 
4.4
%
 
2.9
%
 
7.5
%
 
7.8
%
Comparable sales increase (decrease)3
1.7
%
 
0.8
%
 
(0.4
%)
 
2.7
%
 
4.0
%
Digital sales as % of net sales4
30.0
%
 
27.0
%
 
24.0
%
 
21.0
%
 
18.0
%
Gross profit % of net sales
34.4
%
 
34.7
%
 
34.9
%
 
35.0
%
 
35.9
%
SG&A % of net sales2
31.5
%
 
30.8
%
 
29.8
%
 
29.6
%
 
28.8
%
EBIT % of net sales2
5.4
%
 
6.1
%
 
5.6
%
 
7.8
%
 
10.1
%
Capital expenditures % of net sales
4.2
%
 
4.8
%
 
5.8
%
 
7.7
%
 
6.6
%
Return on assets
6.8
%

5.4
%

4.5
%

6.6
%

8.1
%
Adjusted return on invested capital (“Adjusted ROIC”)5
12.0
%

9.7
%

8.4
%

10.7
%

12.6
%
Inventory turnover rate
4.70

 
4.67

 
4.53

 
4.54

 
4.67

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Per Share Information
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Earnings per diluted share2,6

$3.32



$2.59



$2.02

 

$3.15

 

$3.72

Dividends declared per share1
1.48

 
1.48

 
1.48

 
6.33

 
1.32

1 Amounts were impacted by the October 1, 2015, credit card receivable transaction. As a result of the transaction, the dividends paid in 2015 included a special cash dividend of $4.85 per share. For further information regarding these impacts, see Note 3: Credit Card Receivable Transaction and Note 12: Shareholders’ Equity in Item 8.
2 Results for 2018 include the Estimated Non-recurring Charge of $72, or $0.28 per diluted share, see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8.
3 The 53rd week is not included in comparable sales calculations. For the definition of comparable sales, see Results of Operations in Item 7: Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.
4 Digital sales are online sales and digitally assisted store sales which include Buy Online, Pick Up in Store (“BOPUS”), Ship to Store, Reserve Online, Try in Store (Store Reserve) and Style Board, a digital selling tool.
5 See Adjusted ROIC (non-GAAP financial measure) in Item 7: Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations for additional information and reconciliation to the most directly comparable GAAP financial measure.  
6 Earnings per diluted share included the impact of the Trunk Club goodwill impairment charge of $1.12 per share in 2016.


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Item 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.
(Dollar and share amounts in millions except percentages and per share amounts, except where noted otherwise)
The following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations contains forward-looking statements and should be read in conjunction with Item 1A: Risk Factors, Item 6: Selected Financial Data, our Consolidated Financial Statements and related Notes thereto, as well as other cautionary statements and risks described elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K, before deciding to purchase, hold or sell shares of our common stock.
OVERVIEW
Nordstrom is a leading fashion retailer offering an extensive selection of high-quality brand-name and private label apparel, shoes, cosmetics and accessories for women, men, young adults and children. We serve customers through two businesses — Full-Price and Off-Price. With customers increasingly engaging with Nordstrom in multiple ways, we focus on providing a seamless experience across stores and online. Our operations currently consist of our Nordstrom U.S. and Canada full-line stores, U.S. and Canada Nordstrom Rack stores, Jeffrey boutiques, Last Chance clearance stores, Trunk Club clubhouses and Nordstrom Local. Additionally, customers are served online through Nordstrom.com, Nordstromrack.com, HauteLook and TrunkClub.com.
Our unique business model is a key point of difference in serving customers in multiple ways — through stores, online, Full-Price and Off-Price — with meaningful synergies across Nordstrom. We are focused on leveraging our digital and physical assets to provide customers with a best-in-class experience.
In 2018, net earnings were $564, or $3.32 per diluted share, which included a $0.05 favorable income tax benefit related to prior periods and an estimated non-recurring credit-related charge of $0.28 (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies). Our net sales grew 2.3%, or approximately 3.8% excluding approximately $220 related to the 53rd week in 2017. We maintained a strong financial position, generating annual operating cash flow of more than $1 billion for the 10th consecutive year and returning nearly $1 billion to shareholders in 2018.
In 2018, we achieved the following milestones in executing our customer strategy through our three strategic pillars: providing a compelling product offering, delivering exceptional services and experiences and leveraging the strength of the Nordstrom brand:
We continue to see positive customer trends. We had over 35 million customers, an increase of 6% from last year. One-third of our customers shopped across our multiple channels, resulting in incremental customer spend.
Our early investments to build a robust digital business gives us a competitive advantage. Digital sales increased 16% and made up 30% of net sales. Additionally, Nordstrom.com has achieved scale, with the profitability of Full-Price digital sales at parity with store sales.
Generational investments continued to scale, contributing approximately $2 billion in sales and improvement in profitability. Nordstromrack.com/HauteLook became our fastest business to reach $1 billion in sales. Trunk Club delivered sales growth of 35%. We opened our Men’s Store in New York City and furthered our expansion into Canada with the introduction of six Nordstrom Rack stores.
In 2019, we have two key priorities to drive sales and market share gains. The first key priority is our local market strategy, which launched in 2018 and drove outsized market share gains in Los Angeles. We are focused on scaling in this top market by giving customers greater access to merchandise selection and faster delivery. In addition, we are implementing aspects of our local market strategy in other markets. We will further leverage inventory through our supply chain investments. This includes an Omni-channel Hub in the Los Angeles area to accelerate inventory efficiencies, as well as a one-million square foot Omni-channel center in Riverside, California that will enable faster delivery to the West Coast, which represents 40% of our customer base, at a lower cost to us. While we’re launching this local market strategy in Los Angeles first, we anticipate expanding it to our top markets in the future. We expect to expand our presence in New York City with the planned opening of our Nordstrom NYC women’s store in October. We expect that our NYC flagship, coupled with our digital presence, will contribute a meaningful sales lift in that market.
Our second key priority to drive sales and market share gains is our loyalty program. In 2018, our loyalty customers grew 16% to 11 million and contributed 56% of our sales. In October 2018, we launched our enhanced program, The Nordy Club. Cardmembers now earn three points for every dollar spent, up from two points. In addition, we added experiential elements, such as exclusive access to services and experiences. Going forward, we plan to pursue additional opportunities to further personalize the customer experience and drive increased spend.
We remain focused on driving higher shareholder returns through three key deliverables: growing market share, improving profitability and shareholder returns and continuing our disciplined capital allocation approach. We are well-positioned to execute against our long-term plans and deliver a differentiated customer experience.


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RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
In our ongoing effort to enhance the customer experience, we are focused on providing customers with a seamless experience across our channels. We invested early in our omni-channel capabilities, integrating our operations, merchandising and technology across our stores and online, in both our Full-Price and Off-Price businesses. While our customers may engage with us through multiple channels, we know they value the overall Nordstrom brand experience and view us simply as Nordstrom, which is ultimately how we view our business. We have one reportable segment in 2018, Retail, and analyze our results on a total Company basis.
Similar to other retailers, Nordstrom follows the retail 4-5-4 reporting calendar, which included an extra week in the fourth quarter of 2017 (the “53rd week”). References to 2018 and all years except 2017 within this document are based on a 52-week fiscal year, while 2017 is based on a 53-week fiscal year. However, the 53rd week is not included in the comparable sales calculations.
We may not calculate certain metrics used to evaluate our business in a consistent manner among industry peers. Provided below are definitions of metrics we present within our analysis:
Comparable Salessales from stores that have been open at least one full year at the beginning of the year. In 2019, we expect net sales growth to approximate comparable sales. As a result, we will only report net sales growth
Comparable sales include digital sales and actual returns. Our estimate for sales return allowance is not included in the comparable sales calculations.
Due to the 53rd week in 2017, our 2018 comparable sales are reported on a like-for-like basis with no impact from calendar shifts or the new Revenue Standard (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8).
Digital Sales – online sales and digitally assisted store sales which include Buy Online, Pick Up in Store (“BOPUS”), Ship to Store, Reserve Online, Try in Store (Store Reserve) and Style Board, a digital selling tool
Gross Profit – net sales less cost of sales and related buying and occupancy costs
Inventory Turnover Rate – trailing 4-quarter cost of sales and related buying and occupancy costs divided by the trailing 4-quarter average inventory
Net Sales
During the first quarter of 2018, we adopted the new Revenue Standard using the modified retrospective adoption method (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8). Results beginning in the first quarter of 2018 are presented under the new Revenue Standard, while prior period amounts are not adjusted. Also beginning in 2018, we aligned our sales presentation with how we view the results of our operations internally and how our customers shop with us, by our Full-Price and Off-Price businesses. In 2018, we allocated our sales return allowance and loyalty related adjustments to Full-Price and Off-Price. For 2017 and 2016, Other primarily included unallocated sales return, in-transit and loyalty related adjustments necessary to reconcile sales by business to total net sales.
Full-Price – Nordstrom U.S. full-line stores, Nordstrom.com, Canada, Trunk Club, Jeffrey and Nordstrom Local
Off-Price – Nordstrom U.S. Rack stores, Nordstromrack.com/HauteLook and Last Chance clearance stores
The following table summarizes net sales and comparable sales by business:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Net sales by business:
 
 
 
 
 
Full-Price
10,299

 
10,452

 
10,259

Off-Price
5,181

 
4,956

 
4,509

Other

 
(271
)
 
(270
)
Total net sales

$15,480

 

$15,137

 

$14,498

 
 
 
 
 
 
Net sales increase
2.3
%
 
4.4
%
 
2.9
%
 
 
 
 
 
 
Comparable sales increase (decrease) by business:
 
 
 
 
 
Full-Price
0.9
%
 
0.1
%
 
(2.2
%)
Off-Price
3.5
%
 
2.5
%
 
4.5
%
Total Company
1.7
%
 
0.8
%
 
(0.4
%)
 
 
 
 
 
 
Digital sales as % of total net sales
30
%
 
27
%
 
24
%


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Net Sales (2018 vs. 2017)
In 2018, total Company net sales increased 2.3%, compared with 2017. This included a decrease of approximately 150 basis points due to the 53rd week, which contributed approximately $220 in additional net sales in 2017. Digital sales increased 16% compared with 2017. During the year, we opened our Nordstrom Men’s Store NYC, six Nordstrom Rack stores in Canada and six in the U.S., one Jeffrey boutique and two Nordstrom Locals. We closed two full-line stores and one Trunk Club clubhouse.
Full-Price net sales decreased 1.5%, compared with 2017. This included a decrease of approximately 300 basis points primarily due to loyalty related adjustments and the 53rd week. Full-Price sales reflected an increase in the average selling price per item sold, partially offset by a decrease in the number of items sold. Kids’ was the top-performing merchandise category.
Off-Price net sales increased 4.5%, compared with 2017. This included a decrease of approximately 250 basis points primarily due to the 53rd week and loyalty related adjustments. Off-Price sales reflected an increase in the number of items sold, partially offset by a decrease in the average selling price per item sold. The top-performing merchandise category was Shoes.
Net Sales (2017 vs. 2016)
In 2017, total Company net sales increased 4.4%, compared with 2016. Digital sales increased 16% compared with 2016. During the year, we opened two full-line stores, including one in Canada, and 17 Nordstrom Rack stores. The 53rd week contributed approximately $220 in additional net sales.
Full-Price net sales increased 1.9% compared with 2016. Full-Price sales reflected an increase in the average selling price per item sold and an increase in the number of items sold. Kids’ was the top-performing merchandise category.
Off-Price net sales increased 9.9% compared with 2016. Off-Price sales reflected an increase in the number of items sold, partially offset by a decrease in average selling price per item sold. Beauty was the top-performing merchandise category.
Credit Card Revenues, Net
Credit Card Revenues, net include our portion of the ongoing credit card revenue, net of credit losses, pursuant to our program agreement with TD whereby TD is the exclusive issuer of our consumer credit cards and we perform account servicing functions. In 2017 and 2016, we also recorded asset amortization and deferred revenue recognition associated with the assets and liabilities recorded as part of the initial transaction to sell our U.S. Visa and private label credit card portfolio to TD.
Upon adoption of the new Revenue Standard in 2018, the remaining unamortized balances of the investment in contract asset and deferred revenue associated with the sale of the credit card receivables were eliminated as part of a cumulative-effect adjustment, reducing the opening balance of accumulated deficit for 2018. As a result, the asset amortization and deferred revenue recognition are no longer recorded in credit card revenues, net (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8).
Credit Card Revenues, Net (2018 vs. 2017)
Credit Card Revenues, net increased $39 in 2018 reflecting our strategic partnership with TD to responsibly grow our receivables and associated revenues as well as efforts to drive new account growth. The 53rd week contributed $10 in additional revenue in 2017.
Credit Card Revenues, Net (2017 vs. 2016)
Credit Card Revenues, net increased $82 in 2017 due to the growth of our program and associated revenues as well as a reduction in amortization expense related to the sale of the credit card portfolio. The 53rd week contributed $10 in additional revenue in 2017.
Gross Profit
The following table summarizes gross profit:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Gross profit

$5,325

 

$5,247

 

$5,058

Gross profit as a % of net sales
34.4
%
 
34.7
%
 
34.9
%
Inventory turnover rate
4.70

 
4.67

 
4.53

Gross Profit (2018 vs. 2017)
Our gross profit rate decreased 26 basis points in 2018 when compared with 2017, largely due to higher Full-Price markdowns in the fourth quarter of 2018. Overall, continued focus on inventory execution led to improvements in inventory turnover rate in 2018.
Gross Profit (2017 vs. 2016)
Our gross profit rate decreased 23 basis points in 2017 when compared with 2016, primarily due to higher planned occupancy expenses related to new store growth for Nordstrom Rack and Canada. Continued focus on inventory execution led to improvements in inventory turnover rate in 2017.


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Selling, General and Administrative Expenses
Selling, general and administrative (“SG&A”) expenses are summarized in the following table:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Selling, general and administrative expenses

$4,868

 

$4,662

 

$4,315

Selling, general and administrative expenses as a % of net sales
31.5
%
 
30.8
%
 
29.8
%
Selling, General and Administrative Expenses (2018 vs. 2017)
Our SG&A rate increased 65 basis points and increased $206 in 2018 compared with 2017. The basis point increase was primarily due to the Estimated Non-recurring Charge of $72 in 2018 (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8). The dollar increase was primarily due to planned increases in supply chain and marketing costs and the Estimated Non-recurring Charge.
Selling, General and Administrative Expenses (2017 vs. 2016)
Our SG&A rate increased 104 basis points and increased $347 in 2017 compared with 2016 primarily due to planned technology and performance related expenses.
Goodwill Impairment
We recognized a goodwill impairment charge of $197 in 2016 related to Trunk Club (see Note 9: Fair Value Measurements in Item 8).
Earnings Before Interest and Income Taxes 
Earnings before interest and income taxes (“EBIT”) are summarized in the following table:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Earnings before interest and income taxes

$837

 

$926

 

$805

Earnings before interest and income taxes as a % of net sales
5.4
%
 
6.1
%
 
5.6
%
Earnings Before Interest and Income Taxes (2018 vs. 2017)
EBIT decreased $89 and 71 basis points in 2018 compared with 2017 primarily due to the Estimated Non-recurring Charge of $72 (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8).
Earnings Before Interest and Income Taxes (2017 vs. 2016)
EBIT increased $121 and 56 basis points in 2017 compared with 2016 primarily due to a goodwill impairment charge of $197 in 2016 related to Trunk Club.
Interest Expense, Net
Interest expense, net is summarized in the following table:
Fiscal year
2018


2017


2016

Interest on long-term debt and short-term borrowings

$146

 

$168

 

$147

Less:
 
 
 
 
 
Interest income
(15
)
 
(5
)
 
(1
)
Capitalized interest
(27
)
 
(27
)
 
(25
)
Interest expense, net

$104

 

$136

 

$121

Interest Expense, Net (2018 vs. 2017)
Interest expense, net decreased $32 in 2018 compared with 2017 primarily due to a net interest expense charge of $18 related to the $650 debt refinancing completed in the first quarter of 2017 (see Note 8: Debt and Credit Facilities in Item 8) and an increase in interest income resulting from higher average cash balances and short-term interest rates.
Interest Expense, Net (2017 vs. 2016)
Interest expense, net increased $15 in 2017 compared with 2016 primarily due to a net interest expense charge of $18 related to the $650 debt refinancing completed in the first quarter of 2017.


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Income Tax Expense
Income tax expense is summarized in the following table:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Income tax expense

$169

 

$353

 

$330

Effective tax rate
23.1
%
 
44.7
%
 
48.2
%
In December 2017, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the “Tax Act”) was signed into law. Among numerous other provisions, the Tax Act significantly revised the U.S. federal corporate income tax by reducing the statutory rate from 35% to 21%. In accordance with SEC Staff Accounting Bulletin No. 118, Income Tax Accounting Implications of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, we made a reasonable estimate of the Tax Act’s impact and provisionally recorded this estimate in our 2017 results. As of February 2, 2019, we completed our accounting for the impacts of the Tax Act, resulting in no material changes to previously recorded provisional amounts.
The following table illustrates the components of our effective tax rate:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Statutory rate1
21.0
%
 
33.7
%
 
35.0
%
Tax Act impact
(0.1
%)
 
6.1
%
 

Goodwill impairment

 

 
10.1
%
State and local income taxes, net of federal income taxes
5.8
%
 
4.5
%
 
5.1
%
Federal credits
(1.5
%)
 
(0.7
%)
 
(0.6
%)
Valuation allowance release
(1.2
%)
 

 

Other, net
(0.9
%)
 
1.1
%
 
(1.4
%)
Effective tax rate
23.1
%
 
44.7
%
 
48.2
%
1 The statutory rate in 2018 and 2017 is reduced due to the Tax Act.
Income Tax Expense (2018 vs. 2017)
The decrease in the effective tax rate for 2018 compared with 2017 was primarily due to the lower statutory tax rate enacted under the Tax Act, the benefit of certain current year foreign losses and the release of a foreign valuation allowance (see Note 14: Income Taxes in Item 8).
Income Tax Expense (2017 vs. 2016)
The decrease in the effective tax rate for 2017 compared with 2016 was primarily due to the non-deductible goodwill impairment charge of $197 related to Trunk Club in the third quarter of 2016 (see Note 9: Fair Value Measurements in Item 8). Excluding the impact of the Trunk Club goodwill impairment, our effective tax rate for 2017 would have increased approximately 700 basis points compared with 2016 primarily as a result of the Tax Act. Net earnings in 2017 included $42 related to the Tax Act, which includes a provisional, one-time tax charge of $51 related to the revaluation of net deferred tax assets, partially offset by cash savings from a lower federal tax rate.


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Earnings Per Share
Earnings per share (“EPS”) is as follows:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Basic

$3.37

 

$2.62

 

$2.05

Diluted

$3.32

 

$2.59

 

$2.02

Earnings Per Share (2018 vs. 2017)
The increase in diluted EPS of $0.73 was primarily due to a lower tax rate, partially offset by the Estimated Non-recurring Charge of $0.28 (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8).
Earnings Per Share (2017 vs. 2016)
For 2017, diluted EPS of $2.59 included impacts associated with the Tax Act consisting of a $0.25 per share reduction related to our income tax provision and a $0.06 per share decrease for a one-time investment in our employees. The impact of the Trunk Club goodwill impairment charge of $197 in 2016 was approximately $1.12 per share. Excluding the impact of these items, diluted EPS decreased in 2017 compared with 2016 due to planned increases in supply chain and technology costs associated with our growth initiatives, partially offset by an increase in net sales.
Fiscal Year 2019 Outlook
We are committed to achieving long-term financial targets, which support three strategic objectives in driving shareholder returns: continuing market share gains, improving profitability and returns, and maintaining disciplined capital allocation. Our expectations for fiscal 2019 are as follows:
Net sales growth
1 percent to 2 percent
Credit card revenues, net
Mid to high single-digit growth
EBIT
$915 to $970 million
EBIT margin
5.9 percent to 6.1 percent
Earnings per diluted share (excluding the impact of any potential future share repurchase)
$3.65 to $3.90
Our guidance also incorporates the following assumptions:
We measure our performance through market share, customers and net sales metrics. As comparable sales growth is expected to approximate net sales growth in 2019, we will only report net sales growth.
The effective tax rate is expected to be approximately 26%.
Estimated outstanding shares are expected to be approximately 162, which excludes the impact of any potential future share repurchases.


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Adjusted ROIC (Non-GAAP financial measure)
We believe that Adjusted ROIC is a useful financial measure for investors in evaluating the efficiency and effectiveness of the capital we have invested in our business to generate returns. Adjusted ROIC adjusts our operating leases as if they met the criteria for capital leases or we had purchased the properties. This provides additional supplemental information that reflects the investment in our off-balance sheet operating leases, controls for differences in capital structure between us and our competitors and provides investors and credit agencies with another way to comparably evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of our capital investments over time. In addition, we incorporate Adjusted ROIC into our executive incentive measures and it is an important indicator of shareholders’ return over the long term.
We define Adjusted ROIC as our adjusted net operating profit after tax divided by our average invested capital using the trailing 12-month average. Adjusted ROIC is not a measure of financial performance under generally accepted accounting principles (“GAAP”) and should be considered in addition to, and not as a substitute for, return on assets, net earnings, total assets or other financial measures prepared in accordance with GAAP. Our method of determining non-GAAP financial measures may differ from other companies’ methods and therefore may not be comparable to those used by other companies. Estimated depreciation on capitalized operating leases and average estimated asset base of capitalized operating leases are not calculated in accordance with, or an alternative for, GAAP and should not be considered in isolation or as a substitution of our results as reported under GAAP. The financial measure calculated under GAAP which is most directly comparable to Adjusted ROIC is return on assets. The following is a reconciliation of the components of Adjusted ROIC and return on assets:
 
12 Fiscal Months Ended
 
February 2, 2019

 
February 3, 2018

 
January 28, 2017

 
January 30, 2016

 
January 31, 2015

Net earnings

$564

 

$437

 

$354

 

$600

 

$720

Add: income tax expense
169

 
353

 
330

 
376

 
465

Add: interest expense
119

 
141

 
122

 
125

 
139

Earnings before interest and income tax expense
852

 
931

 
806

 
1,101

 
1,324

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Add: rent expense
251

 
250

 
202

 
176

 
137

Less: estimated depreciation on capitalized operating leases1
(134
)
 
(133
)
 
(108
)
 
(94
)
 
(74
)
Adjusted net operating profit
969

 
1,048

 
900

 
1,183

 
1,387

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Less: estimated income tax expense
(223
)
 
(468
)
 
(416
)
 
(456
)
 
(544
)
Adjusted net operating profit after tax

$746

 

$580

 

$484

 

$727

 

$843

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Average total assets

$8,282

 

$8,055

 

$7,917

 

$9,076

 

$8,860

Less: average non-interest-bearing current liabilities2
(3,479
)
 
(3,261
)
 
(3,012
)
 
(2,993
)
 
(2,730
)
Less: average deferred property incentives and deferred rent liability2
(616
)
 
(644
)
 
(644
)
 
(548
)
 
(502
)
Add: average estimated asset base of capitalized operating leases1
2,018

 
1,805

 
1,512

 
1,236

 
1,058

Average invested capital

$6,205

 

$5,955

 

$5,773

 

$6,771

 

$6,686

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Return on assets3
6.8
%
 
5.4
%
 
4.5
%
 
6.6
%
 
8.1
%
Adjusted ROIC3
12.0
%
 
9.7
%
 
8.4
%
 
10.7
%
 
12.6
%
1 Capitalized operating leases is our best estimate of the asset base we would record for our leases that are classified as operating if they had met the criteria for a capital lease or we had purchased the property. The asset base is calculated based upon the trailing 12-month average of the monthly asset base. The asset base for each month is calculated as the trailing 12 months of rent expense multiplied by eight. The multiple of eight times rent expense is a commonly used method of estimating the asset base we would record for our capitalized operating leases. We do not expect the adoption of the new Lease Standard to have a material impact on our Adjusted ROIC (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8).
2 Balances associated with our deferred rent liability have been classified as long-term liabilities as of January 28, 2017.
3 Results for the 12 fiscal months ended February 2, 2019 include lower income tax expense primarily associated with the Tax Act and a $72 unfavorable impact related to the Estimated Non-recurring Charge (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8). Results for the 12 fiscal months ended February 3, 2018 include a $42 unfavorable impact related to the Tax Act. Results for the 12 fiscal months ended January 28, 2017 include a $197 unfavorable impact of the Trunk Club non-cash goodwill impairment charge in the third quarter of 2016.


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LIQUIDITY AND CAPITAL RESOURCES
We strive to maintain a level of liquidity sufficient to allow us to cover our seasonal cash needs and to maintain appropriate levels of short-term borrowings. We believe that our operating cash flows, available credit facility and potential future borrowings are sufficient to meet our cash requirements for the next 12 months and beyond.
Over the long term, we manage our cash and capital structure to maximize shareholder return, maintain our financial position, manage refinancing risk and allow flexibility for strategic initiatives. We regularly assess our debt and leverage levels, capital expenditure requirements, debt service payments, dividend payouts, potential share repurchases and other future investments. We believe that as of February 2, 2019, our existing cash and cash equivalents on-hand of $957, available credit facility of $800 and potential future operating cash flows and borrowings will be sufficient to fund these scheduled future payments and potential long-term initiatives.
The following is a summary of our cash flows by activity:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Net cash provided by operating activities

$1,296

 

$1,400

 

$1,658

Net cash used in investing activities
(653
)
 
(684
)
 
(791
)
Net cash used in financing activities
(867
)
 
(542
)
 
(455
)
Operating Activities
The majority of our operating cash inflows are derived from sales. We also receive cash payments for property incentives from developers. Our operating cash outflows generally consist of payments to our merchandise vendors (net of vendor allowances), payments to our employees for wages, salaries and other employee benefits and payments to our landlords for rent. Operating cash outflows also include payments for income taxes and interest payments on our short-term and long-term borrowings.
Net cash provided by operating activities decreased by $104 between 2018 and 2017 primarily due to the timing of payroll and increased incentive compensation payouts, which included $16 for our one-time investment in employees in response to the Tax Act, paid in 2018. Net cash provided by operating activities decreased by $258 between 2017 and 2016 primarily due to the timing of tax refunds and payments.
Investing Activities
Our investing cash inflows are generally from proceeds from sales of property and equipment. Our investing cash outflows include payments for capital expenditures, including stores, supply chain improvements and technology costs. In addition, other investing includes payments for investments in other companies, as well as proceeds from distributions or sales of these investments.
Net cash used in investing activities decreased by $31 between 2018 and 2017 and $107 between 2017 and 2016 primarily due to decreases in capital expenditures, partially offset by the acquisitions of two retail technology companies in 2018, which were classified in other investing activities, net (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8).
Capital Expenditures
Our capital expenditures, net are summarized as follows:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Capital expenditures

$654

 

$731

 

$846

Less: deferred property incentives1
(53
)
 
(64
)
 
(65
)
Capital expenditures, net

$601

 

$667

 

$781

 
 
 
 
 
 
Capital expenditures % of net sales
4.2
%
 
4.8
%
 
5.8
%
 
 
 
 
 
 
Capital expenditures, net category allocation:
 
 
 
 
 
Technology
30
%
 
28
%
 
26
%
Supply chain
18
%
 
4
%
 
4
%
Generational investments2
30
%
 
24
%
 
32
%
New stores, relocations, remodels and other
22
%
 
44
%
 
38
%
Total
100
%
 
100
%
 
100
%
1 Deferred property incentives are included in our cash provided by operations in our Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows in Item 8. We operationally view the property incentives we receive from our developers as an offset to our capital expenditures.
2 Generational investments include Nordstromrack.com/HauteLook, Canada, Trunk Club and Nordstrom NYC.


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Capital expenditures, net decreased $66 in 2018 compared with 2017 primarily due to fewer new Nordstrom Rack store openings and U.S. full-line relocations, partially offset by increased supply chain investments. Capital expenditures, net decreased $114 in 2017 compared with 2016 primarily due to fewer Canada full-line store openings.
Our capital expenditures, net were $3,726, or 5% of net sales, over the last five years. We estimate our spending as a percent of sales in 2019 to increase to 6%, as we shifted approximately $100 in projects from 2018, and will consist primarily of investments in our Supply Chain Network and Nordstrom NYC. As we near the end of our generational investments cycle, we expect capital expenditure levels to moderate in 2020.
Financing Activities
The majority of our financing activities include common stock repurchases, long-term debt proceeds or payments and dividend payments.
Net cash used in financing activities increased $325 between 2018 and 2017 primarily due to increased share repurchase activity, partially offset by increased proceeds from stock option exercises, driven by a higher stock price. Net cash used in financing activities increased $87 between 2017 and 2016 primarily due to a decrease in cash book overdrafts as a result of payment timing differences.
Share Repurchases
In February 2017, our Board of Directors authorized a new program to repurchase up to $500 of our outstanding common stock, through August 31, 2018. There was $319 of unused capacity upon this program’s expiration. In August 2018, our Board of Directors authorized a new program to repurchase up to $1,500 of our outstanding common stock, with no expiration date.
Under the February 2017 program until it expired and then under the August 2018 program, we repurchased 14.3 shares of our common stock for an aggregate purchase price of $702 during 2018. We had $893 remaining in share repurchase capacity as of February 2, 2019. The actual timing, price, manner and amounts of future share repurchases, if any, will be subject to market and economic conditions and applicable SEC rules.
Borrowing Activity
During 2017, we issued $350 aggregate principal amount of 4.00% senior unsecured notes due March 2027 and $300 aggregate principal amount of 5.00% senior unsecured notes due January 2044. We recorded debt issuance costs incurred as a result of the issuance in other financing activities, net in the Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows. With the proceeds of these new notes, we retired our $650 senior unsecured notes that were due January 2018 (see Note 8: Debt and Credit Facilities in Item 8).
Additionally, in 2018, we fully repaid $47 outstanding on our wholly owned subsidiary Puerto Rico’s unsecured borrowing facility (see Note 8: Debt and Credit Facilities in Item 8).
Dividends
In 2018, we paid dividends of $250, or $1.48 per share, compared with $247, or $1.48 per share, in 2017 and $256, or $1.48 per share, in 2016. In determining the dividends to pay, we analyze our dividend payout ratio and dividend yield, while taking into consideration our current and projected operating performance and liquidity. Our dividend payout ratio target range is 30% to 40% of the prior year’s net earnings.
In February 2019, subsequent to year end, we declared a quarterly dividend of $0.37 per share, which will be paid on March 26, 2019 to holders of record as of March 11, 2019.


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Free Cash Flow (Non-GAAP financial measure)
Free Cash Flow is one of our key liquidity measures, and when used in conjunction with GAAP measures, provides investors with a meaningful analysis of our ability to generate cash from our business.
Beginning in the first quarter of fiscal 2018, we no longer adjust free cash flow for cash dividends paid. We believe this presentation is more reflective of our operating performance and more consistent with the way we manage our business, how our peers calculate free cash flows and prevailing industry practice. Prior period Free Cash Flow financial measures have been recast to conform with current period presentation.
Free Cash Flow is not a measure of financial performance under GAAP and should be considered in addition to, and not as a substitute for, operating cash flows or other financial measures prepared in accordance with GAAP. Our method of determining non-GAAP financial measures may differ from other companies’ methods and therefore may not be comparable to those used by other companies. The financial measure calculated under GAAP which is most directly comparable to Free Cash Flow is net cash provided by operating activities. The following is a reconciliation of net cash provided by operating activities to Free Cash Flow:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Net cash provided by operating activities

$1,296

 

$1,400

 

$1,658

Less: capital expenditures
(654
)
 
(731
)
 
(846
)
Add: proceeds from sale of credit card receivables originated at third parties

 
16

 

(Less) Add: change in cash book overdrafts

 
(55
)
 
4

Free Cash Flow

$642

 

$630

 

$816

Adjusted EBITDA (Non-GAAP financial measure)
Adjusted earnings before interest, income taxes, depreciation and amortization (“EBITDA”) is our key financial metric to reflect our view of cash flow from net earnings. Adjusted EBITDA excludes significant items which are non-operating in nature in order to evaluate our core operating performance against prior periods. The financial measure calculated under GAAP which is most directly comparable to Adjusted EBITDA is net earnings.

Adjusted EBITDA is not a measure of financial performance under GAAP and should be considered in addition to, and not as a substitute for net earnings, overall change in cash or liquidity of the business as a whole. Our method of determining non-GAAP financial measures may differ from other companies’ methods and therefore may not be comparable to those used by other companies. The following is a reconciliation of net earnings to Adjusted EBITDA:
Fiscal year
2018

 
2017

 
2016

Net earnings

$564

 

$437

 

$354

Add: income tax expense
169

 
353

 
330

Add: interest expense, net
104

 
136

 
121

Earnings before interest and income taxes
837


926

 
805

 
 
 
 
 
 
Add: depreciation and amortization expenses
669


666

 
645

Less: amortization of deferred property incentives
(79
)

(79
)
 
(80
)
Adjusted EBITDA

$1,427

 

$1,513

 

$1,370



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Credit Capacity and Commitments
As of February 2, 2019, we had total short-term borrowing capacity of $800. In September 2018, we renewed our existing $800 senior unsecured revolving credit facility (“revolver”), extending the expiration from April 2020 to September 2023. Our revolver contains customary representations, warranties, covenants and terms, which are substantially similar to our 2015 revolver. Under the terms of our revolver, we pay a variable rate of interest and a commitment fee based on our debt rating. The revolver is available for working capital, capital expenditures and general corporate purposes. Provided that we obtain written consent from our lenders, we have the option to increase the revolving commitment by up to $200, to a total of $1,000, and two options to extend the revolving commitment by one year.
Our $800 commercial paper program allows us to use the proceeds to fund operating cash requirements. Under the terms of the commercial paper agreement, we pay a rate of interest based on, among other factors, the maturity of the issuance and market conditions. The issuance of commercial paper has the effect, while it is outstanding, of reducing available liquidity under the revolver by an amount equal to the principal amount of commercial paper.
As of February 2, 2019, we had no issuances outstanding under our commercial paper program and no borrowings outstanding under our revolver.
Our wholly owned subsidiary in Puerto Rico maintained a $52 unsecured borrowing facility to support our expansion into that market. Borrowings on this facility incurred interest at an annual rate based upon LIBOR plus 1.275% and also incurred a fee based on any unused commitment. In 2018, we fully repaid $47 outstanding on this facility, which was included in the current portion of long-term debt. This facility expired in the fourth quarter of 2018.
We maintain trade and standby letters of credit to facilitate our international payments. As of February 2, 2019, we have $8 available and none outstanding under the trade letter of credit and $15 available and $2 outstanding under the standby letter of credit.
Plans for our Nordstrom NYC store, which we currently expect to open in October 2019, ultimately include owning a condominium interest in a mixed-use tower and leasing certain nearby properties. As of February 2, 2019, we had approximately $302 of fee interest in land, which is expected to convert to the condominium interest once the store is constructed. We have committed to make future installment payments based on the developer meeting pre-established construction and development milestones. In the event that this project is not completed, the opening may be delayed and we may be subject to future losses or capital commitments in order to complete construction or to monetize our investment.
Impact of Credit Ratings
Under the terms of our revolver, any borrowings we may enter into will accrue interest for Euro-Dollar Rate Loans at a floating base rate tied to LIBOR, for Canadian Dealer Offer Rate Loans at a floating rate tied to CDOR, and for Base Rate Loans at the highest of: (i) the Euro-Dollar rate plus 100 basis points, (ii) the federal funds rate plus 50 basis points and (iii) the prime rate.
The rate depends upon the type of borrowing incurred, plus in each case an applicable margin. This applicable margin varies depending upon the credit ratings assigned to our long-term unsecured debt. At the time of this report, our long-term unsecured debt ratings, outlook and resulting applicable margin were as follows:
 
Credit Ratings
 
Outlook

Moody’s
Baa1
 
Stable

Standard & Poor’s
BBB+
 
Stable

 
 
 
 
 
Base Interest Rate
 
Applicable Margin

Euro-Dollar Rate Loan
LIBOR
 
1.03
%
Canadian Dealer Offer Rate Loan
CDOR
 
1.03
%
Base Rate Loan
various
 
0.03
%
Should the ratings assigned to our long-term unsecured debt improve, the applicable margin associated with any such borrowings may decrease, resulting in a lower borrowing cost under this facility. Should the ratings assigned to our long-term unsecured debt worsen, the applicable margin associated with our borrowings may increase, resulting in a higher borrowing cost under this facility.
Debt Covenants
The revolver requires that we maintain an adjusted debt to earnings before interest, income taxes, depreciation, amortization and rent (“EBITDAR”) leverage ratio of no more than four times. As of February 2, 2019, we were in compliance with this covenant.


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Adjusted Debt to EBITDAR (Non-GAAP financial measure)
Adjusted Debt to EBITDAR is one of our key financial metrics, and we believe that our debt levels are best analyzed using this measure. Our goal is to manage debt levels to maintain an investment-grade credit rating and operate with an efficient capital structure. In evaluating our debt levels, this measure provides a reflection of our credit worthiness that could impact our credit rating and borrowing costs. We also have a debt covenant that requires an adjusted debt to EBITDAR leverage ratio of no more than four times.
Adjusted Debt to EBITDAR is not a measure of financial performance under GAAP and should be considered in addition to, and not as a substitute for, debt to net earnings, net earnings, debt or other financial measures prepared in accordance with GAAP. Our method of determining non-GAAP financial measures may differ from other companies’ methods and therefore may not be comparable to those used by other companies. Estimated capitalized operating lease liability is not calculated in accordance with, or an alternative for, GAAP and should not be considered in isolation or as a substitution of our results as reported under GAAP. The financial measure calculated under GAAP which is most directly comparable to Adjusted Debt to EBITDAR is debt to net earnings. The following is a reconciliation of the components of Adjusted Debt to EBITDAR and debt to net earnings:
 
20181

 
20171

Debt

$2,685

 

$2,737

Add: estimated capitalized operating lease liability2
2,009

 
2,001

Adjusted Debt

$4,694

 

$4,738

 
 
 
 
Net earnings
564

 
437

Add: income tax expense
169

 
353

Add: interest expense, net
104

 
136

Earnings before interest and income taxes
837

 
926

 
 
 
 
Add: depreciation and amortization expenses
669

 
666

Add: rent expense, net
251

 
250

Add: non-cash acquisition-related charges

 
1

Adjusted EBITDAR

$1,757

 

$1,843

 
 
 
 
Debt to Net Earnings3
4.8

 
6.3

Adjusted Debt to EBITDAR3
2.7

 
2.6

1 The components of Adjusted Debt are as of February 2, 2019 and February 3, 2018, while the components of Adjusted EBITDAR are for the 12 months ended February 2, 2019 and February 3, 2018.
2 Based upon the estimated lease liability as of the end of the period, calculated as the trailing 12 months of rent expense multiplied by eight. The multiple of eight times rent expense is a commonly used method of estimating the debt we would record for our leases that are classified as operating if they had met the criteria for a capital lease or we had purchased the property. We do not expect the adoption of the new Lease Standard to have a material impact on our Adjusted Debt to EBITDAR (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8).
3 Results for the 12 fiscal months ended February 2, 2019 include lower income tax expense primarily associated with the Tax Act and a $72 unfavorable impact related to the Estimated Non-recurring Charge (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8). Results for the 12 fiscal months ended February 3, 2018 include a $42 unfavorable impact related to the Tax Act.  


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Contractual Obligations
The following table summarizes our contractual obligations and the expected effect on our liquidity and cash flows as of February 2, 2019. We expect to fund these commitments primarily with operating cash flows generated in the normal course of business and credit available to us under existing and potential future facilities.
 
Total

 
Less than
1 year

 
1 – 3 years

 
3 – 5 years

 
More than
5 years

Long-term debt

$4,596

 

$147

 

$1,243

 

$188

 

$3,018

Operating leases
2,609

 
322

 
607

 
520

 
1,160

Purchase obligations
1,865

 
1,733

 
123

 
9

 

Other long-term liabilities
363

 
59

 
60

 
43

 
201

Total

$9,433

 

$2,261

 

$2,033

 

$760

 

$4,379

Included in the required debt repayments disclosed above are estimated total interest payments of $1,822 as of February 2, 2019, payable over the remaining life of the debt.
The operating lease obligations in the table above do not include payments for operating expenses that are required by most of our lease agreements. Such expenses, which include common area charges, real estate taxes and other executory costs, totaled $138 in 2018, $121 in 2017 and $112 in 2016. In addition, some of our leases require additional rental payments based on a percentage of our sales, referred to as “percentage rent.” Percentage rent, which is also excluded from the obligations in the table above, was $9 in 2018, $11 in 2017 and $12 in 2016.
Purchase obligations primarily consist of inventory purchase orders and capital expenditure commitments. Capital expenditure commitments include Nordstrom NYC.
Other long-term liabilities consist of workers’ compensation and other liability insurance reserves and postretirement benefits. The payment amounts presented above were estimated based on historical payment trends. Other long-term liabilities not requiring cash payments, such as deferred property incentives and deferred revenue, were excluded from the table above. Also excluded from the table above are unrecognized tax benefits of $33, as we are unable to reasonably estimate the timing of future cash payments, if any, for these liabilities.
Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements
Pursuant to the program agreement with TD, we offer and administer a loyalty program and perform other account servicing functions (see Note 3: Credit Card Receivable Transaction in Item 8). Credit card receivables serviced under this contract are $3,651 as of February 2, 2019.
Other than items noted in the paragraph above, in addition to operating leases entered into in the normal course of business and the development of our Nordstrom Men’s Store NYC and Nordstrom NYC, we had no material off-balance sheet arrangements during 2018.
CRITICAL ACCOUNTING ESTIMATES
The preparation of our financial statements requires that we make estimates and judgments that affect the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses, and disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities. We base our estimates on historical experience and other assumptions that we believe to be reasonable under the circumstances. Actual results may differ from these estimates. The following discussion highlights the estimates we believe are critical and should be read in conjunction with the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8. Our management has discussed the development and selection of these critical accounting estimates with the Audit & Finance Committee of our Board of Directors, and the Audit & Finance Committee has reviewed our disclosures that follow.
Revenue Recognition
During the first quarter of 2018, we adopted the new Revenue Standard using the modified retrospective adoption method (see Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8). Results beginning in the first quarter of 2018 are presented under the new Revenue Standard, while prior period amounts are not adjusted.
We recognize sales revenue net of estimated returns and excluding sales taxes. Revenue from sales to customers shipped from our Supply Chain Network facilities, stores and directly from our vendors (“shipped revenues”), which includes shipping revenue when applicable, is recognized at shipping point, the point in time where control has transferred to the customer. Costs to ship orders to customers are expensed as a fulfillment activity at shipping point, commissions from sales at our Full-Price stores are expensed at the point of sale and both are recorded in selling, general and administrative expenses. Prior to 2018, shipped revenues were recognized upon estimated receipt by the customer and we recorded an estimated in-transit allowance for orders shipped prior to a period’s end, but not yet received by the customer.


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We reduce sales and cost of sales by an estimate of customer merchandise returns, which is calculated based on historical return patterns, and record a sales return allowance and an estimated returns asset. Our sales return allowance is classified in other current liabilities and our estimated returns asset, calculated based on the cost of merchandise sold, is classified in prepaid expenses and other on the Consolidated Balance Sheet. Due to the seasonality of our business, these balances typically increase with higher sales occurring in the last month of a period, such as the Anniversary Sale typically at the end of the second quarter, and decrease in the following period. Prior to 2018, the estimated cost of merchandise returned was netted with our sales return allowance in other current liabilities.
Although we believe we have sufficient current and historical knowledge to record reasonable estimates of sales returns, actual returns could differ from recorded amounts. In the past three years, there were no significant changes in customer return behavior and we have made no material changes to our estimates included in the calculations of our sales return allowance. A 10% change in the sales return allowance net of the estimated returns asset would have had a $15 impact on our net earnings for the year ended February 2, 2019.
As our customers earn points and Notes in The Nordy Club, a portion of underlying sales revenue is deferred based on an estimated stand-alone selling price of points, Notes and other loyalty benefits, such as alterations. We recognize the revenue and related cost of sale when the Notes are ultimately redeemed and reduce our contract liability. We include the deferred revenue in other current liabilities on the Consolidated Balance Sheet. We record breakage revenue of unused points and unredeemed Notes based on expected customer redemption. We estimate, based on historical usage, that 6% of Notes will be unredeemed and recognized as revenue. Other benefits of the loyalty program, including shopping and fashion events, are recorded in selling, general and administrative expenses as these are not a material right of the program.
Merchandise Inventories
Merchandise inventories are generally stated at the lower of cost or market value using the retail inventory method. Under the retail method, the valuation of inventories is determined by applying a calculated cost-to-retail ratio to the retail value of ending inventory. The value of our inventory on the balance sheet is then reduced by a charge to cost of sales for retail inventory markdowns taken on the selling price. To determine if the retail value of our inventory should be marked down, we consider current and anticipated demand, customer preferences, age of the merchandise and fashion trends. Inherent in the retail inventory method are certain management judgments that may affect the ending inventory valuation as well as gross profit.
We take physical inventory counts and adjust our records accordingly. Following each physical inventory cycle, we adjust shrink to actual results and an estimate is recorded for shrink from the count date to year end. We evaluate and determine our estimated shrinkage rate, which is based on a percentage of sales, using the most recent physical inventory and historical results.
Impairment of Long-Lived Assets
When facts and circumstances indicate that the carrying values of long-lived assets, including buildings, equipment and amortizable intangible assets, may be impaired, we perform an evaluation of recoverability by comparing the carrying values of the net assets to their related projected undiscounted future cash flows, in addition to other quantitative and qualitative analyses.
Land, property and equipment are grouped at the lowest level at which there are identifiable cash flows when assessing impairment. Cash flows for our retail store assets are identified at the individual store level, while our intangible assets associated with HauteLook and Trunk Club are identified at their respective reporting unit levels.
Our estimates are subject to uncertainties and may be impacted by various external factors such as economic conditions and market competition. While we believe the inputs and assumptions utilized in our analyses of future cash flows are reasonable, events or circumstances may change, which could cause us to revise these estimates.
Income Taxes
We use the asset and liability method of accounting for income taxes. Using this method, deferred tax assets and liabilities are recorded based on differences between the financial reporting and tax basis of assets and liabilities and for operating loss and tax credit carryforwards. The deferred tax assets and liabilities are calculated using the enacted tax rates and laws that are expected to be in effect when the differences are expected to reverse. We routinely evaluate the likelihood of realizing the benefit of our deferred tax assets and may record a valuation allowance if, based on all available evidence, it is determined that some portion of the tax benefit will not be realized.
We regularly evaluate the likelihood of realizing the benefit for income tax positions we have taken in various federal, state and foreign filings by considering all relevant facts, circumstances and information available. If we believe it is more likely than not that our position will be sustained, we recognize a benefit at the largest amount that we believe is cumulatively greater than 50% likely to be realized. Our unrecognized tax benefit was $30 as of February 2, 2019, and $31 as of February 3, 2018. Interest and penalties related to income tax matters are classified as a component of income tax expense.


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Income taxes require significant management judgment regarding applicable statutes and their related interpretation, the status of various income tax audits and our particular facts and circumstances. Also, as audits are completed or statutes of limitations lapse, it may be necessary to record adjustments to our taxes payable, deferred taxes, tax reserves or income tax expense. Such adjustments did not materially impact our effective income tax rate in 2018, 2017 or 2016.
In December 2017, the Tax Act was signed into law. In accordance with SEC Staff Accounting Bulletin No. 118, Income Tax Accounting Implications of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, we made a reasonable estimate of the Tax Act’s impact and provisionally recorded this estimate in our 2017 results. As of February 2, 2019, we have completed our accounting for the impacts of the Tax Act, resulting in no material changes to previously recorded provisional amounts (see Note 14: Income Taxes in Item 8).
RECENT ACCOUNTING PRONOUNCEMENTS
See Note 1: Nature of Operations and Summary of Significant Accounting Policies in Item 8 for a discussion of recent accounting pronouncements and the impact these standards are anticipated to have on our results of operations, liquidity or capital resources.
Item 7A. Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk.
(Dollars in millions)
INTEREST RATE RISK
For our long-term debt of $2,685, our exposure to interest rate risk is primarily limited to changes in fair value. As our debt is primarily fixed-rate, changes in interest rates do not significantly impact our cash flows. However, changes in interest rates increase or decrease the fair value of our debt, depending on whether market rates are lower or higher than our fixed rates. In addition, our $500 term loan will mature in 2020, and if we refinance this debt, we are at risk of interest rate changes with respect to any difference between the existing interest rate and the interest rate on its replacement. As of February 2, 2019, the fair value of our long-term debt was $2,692 (see Note 8: Debt and Credit Facilities and Note 9: Fair Value Measurements in Item 8).
We are exposed to interest rate risk primarily from changes in short-term interest rates. Interest rate fluctuations can affect our interest income and interest expense. As of February 2, 2019, we had cash and cash equivalents of $957 which generate interest income at variable rates.
FOREIGN CURRENCY EXCHANGE RISK
The majority of our revenues, expenses and capital expenditures are transacted in U.S. Dollars. Our U.S. operation periodically enters into merchandise purchase orders denominated in British Pounds or Euros. From time to time, we may use forward contracts to hedge against fluctuations in foreign currency prices. As of February 2, 2019, our outstanding forward contracts did not have a material impact on our Consolidated Financial Statements.
We have six full-line stores and six Nordstrom Rack stores in Canada. The functional currency of our Canadian operation is the Canadian Dollar. We translate assets and liabilities into U.S. Dollars using the exchange rate in effect at the balance sheet date, while we translate revenues and expenses using a weighted-average exchange rate for the period. We record these translation adjustments as a component of accumulated other comprehensive loss on the Consolidated Balance Sheets in Item 8. Our Canadian operation enters into merchandise purchase orders denominated in U.S. Dollars for some portion of its inventory. As sales in Canada are denominated in the Canadian Dollar, gross profit for our Canadian operation can be impacted by foreign currency fluctuations.
In addition, our U.S. operation incurs certain expenditures denominated in Canadian Dollars and our Canadian operation incurs certain expenditures denominated in U.S. Dollars. This activity results in transaction gains and losses that arise from exchange rate fluctuations, which are recorded as gains or losses in the Consolidated Statements of Earnings in Item 8. As of February 2, 2019, activities associated with foreign currency exchange risk have not had a material impact on our Consolidated Financial Statements.


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Item 8: Financial Statements and Supplementary Data.
REPORT OF INDEPENDENT REGISTERED PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRM

To the Board of Directors and Shareholders of Nordstrom, Inc.
Opinion on the Financial Statements
We have audited the accompanying consolidated balance sheets of Nordstrom, Inc. and subsidiaries (the “Company”) as of February 2, 2019 and February 3, 2018, and the related consolidated statements of earnings, comprehensive earnings, shareholders’ equity, and cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended February 2, 2019, and the related notes (collectively referred to as the “financial statements”). In our opinion, the financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the Company as of February 2, 2019 and February 3, 2018, and the results of its operations and its cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended February 2, 2019, in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.
We have also audited, in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (PCAOB), the Company’s internal control over financial reporting as of February 2, 2019, based on the criteria established in Internal Control-Integrated Framework (2013) issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission and our report dated March 18, 2019, expressed an unqualified opinion on the Company’s internal control over financial reporting.
Basis for Opinion
These financial statements are the responsibility of the Companys management. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the Company’s financial statements based on our audits. We are a public accounting firm registered with the PCAOB and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.
We conducted our audits in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements are free of material misstatement, whether due to error or fraud. Our audits included performing procedures to assess the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements, whether due to error or fraud, and performing procedures that respond to those risks. Such procedures included examining, on a test basis, evidence regarding the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements. Our audits also included evaluating the accounting principles used and significant estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the financial statements. We believe that our audits provide a reasonable basis for our opinion.

/s/ Deloitte & Touche LLP
Seattle, Washington
March 18, 2019

We have served as the Companys auditor since 1970


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Nordstrom, Inc.
Consolidated Statements of Earnings
(In millions except per share amounts)
Fiscal year
2018


2017