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Ross Stores Reports November Sales

PLEASANTON, Calif., Dec. 2 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Ross Stores, Inc. (Nasdaq: ROST) today reported sales of $391 million for the four weeks ended November 27, 2004, a 7% increase over the $364 million in sales for the four weeks ended November 29, 2003. Comparable store sales for the same period declined 2% on top of a 5% gain in the prior year.

For the 43 weeks ended November 27, 2004, sales totaled $3.419 billion, a 7% increase over the $3.186 billion in sales for the 43 weeks ended November 29, 2003. For the 43 week period, comparable store sales fell 1% from the prior year period.

In commenting, Michael Balmuth, Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, "November same store sales performed in line with our expectations for a 1% to 4% decline versus a strong 5% gain in the prior year. The strongest markets were Texas and Florida, while the best performing merchandise categories were Shoes and Accessories. Looking ahead, we are maintaining our prior same store sales forecast for a 1% to 4% decline in both December and January."

Additional recorded information concerning today's press release and the Company's future outlook can be accessed by calling 402-220-5900, PIN #2363, from 8:30 a.m. Eastern time on December 2, 2004 through 8:00 p.m. Eastern time on December 3, 2004. A transcript of these comments also will be made available on the press release page of the Company's website at The Company expects to report December sales results on Thursday, January 6, 2005.

Forward-Looking Statements: This press release and the recorded comments and transcript on the Company's website contain forward-looking statements regarding planned new store growth and expected sales and earnings levels and forward-looking statements regarding the time needed to remedy ongoing difficulties with new core merchandising systems and the severity, duration and financial impact of resulting in-store inventory imbalances, all of which are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause the Company's actual results to differ materially from management's current expectations. The Company is continuing to assess the new information systems, and cannot be certain that all problems have currently been discovered or that their scope is understood. The words "plan," "expect," "anticipate," "estimate," "believe," "forecast," "project," "guidance," "looking ahead" and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. Risk factors for Ross Stores and dd's DISCOUNTS(SM) include, without limitation, the Company's ability to successfully and quickly implement, integrate and correct difficulties in various new supply chain and core merchandising systems, including generation of all necessary information in a timely and cost effective manner, achieving and maintaining targeted levels of productivity and efficiency in its distribution centers, obtaining acceptable new store locations, competitive pressures in the apparel industry, changes in the level of consumer spending on or preferences for apparel or home-related merchandise, changes in geopolitical and general economic conditions, unseasonable weather trends, lower than planned gross margin and greater than planned operating costs. Other risk factors are detailed in the Company's Form 10-K for fiscal 2003. The factors underlying our forecasts are dynamic and subject to change. As a result, our forecasts speak only as of the date they are given and do not necessarily reflect the Company's outlook at any other point in time. The Company does not undertake to update or revise these forward-looking statements.

Ross Stores, Inc., a Fortune 500 and Nasdaq 100 (ROST) company headquartered in Pleasanton, California, is the nation's second-largest off- price company with 2003 revenues of $3.9 billion. As of November 27, 2004, the Company operated 642 Ross stores and ten dd's DISCOUNTS(SM), compared to 573 Ross locations at the end of the same period last year. Ross Stores offers first-quality, in-season, name brand and designer apparel, accessories, footwear and home fashions for the entire family at everyday savings of 20 to 60 percent off department and specialty store regular prices. dd's DISCOUNTS(SM) features a more moderate assortment of first-quality, in-season, name brand apparel, accessories, footwear and home fashions for the entire family at everyday savings of 20 to 70 percent off moderate department and discount store regular prices. Additional information is available on the Company's website at

SOURCE Ross Stores, Inc. CONTACT: John G. Call, Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer,
+1-925-965-4315, or
Katie Loughnot, Vice President, Investor Relations,
+1-925-965-4509, or, both of Ross Stores, Inc.
Web site: