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Ross Stores Reports November Same Store Sales Up 5%

NEWARK, Calif., Dec. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Ross Stores, Inc. (Nasdaq: ROST) today reported that sales grew 15% to $364 million for the four weeks ended November 29, 2003. These results were on top of a 12% increase for the four weeks ended November 30, 2002, when sales totaled $316 million. Comparable store sales for the same period grew 5% over the prior year.

For the 43 weeks ended November 29, 2003, sales rose 11% to $3.186 billion. These results were on top of a 19% gain for the 43 weeks ended November 30, 2002, when sales totaled $2.883 billion. For the 43 weeks, comparable store sales were flat versus an 8% increase in the prior year period.

In commenting, Michael Balmuth, Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, "We are pleased with the solid start to the holiday season during November. The strongest markets during the month were California, Hawaii, Arizona and Texas. In addition, we continued to realize robust sales gains in the home businesses as well as in juniors, accessories and shoes. Looking ahead, we are maintaining our prior same store sales forecast for a 2% to 3% gain in December and a 4% to 5% increase in January."

Forward-Looking Statements: This press release contains certain forward- looking statements regarding expected sales and earnings growth, which are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause the Company's actual results to differ materially from management's current expectations. The words "expect," "anticipate," "estimate," "believe," "forecast," "project" and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. Risk factors include obtaining acceptable new store locations, competitive pressures in the apparel industry, changes in geopolitical and general economic conditions, changes in the level of consumer spending on or preferences in apparel or home-related merchandise and the Company's ability to successfully implement various new supply chain and merchandising systems in a timely and cost effective manner. Other risk factors are detailed in the Company's Form 10-K for fiscal 2002. 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.

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 4, 2003 through 8:00 p.m. eastern time on December 5, 2003. A transcript of these comments also will be made available on the press release page of the Company's web site at

Ross Stores, Inc. operates a chain of off-price retail stores offering first quality, in-season, branded apparel and apparel-related merchandise for the entire family at prices that average 20% to 60% less than department and specialty stores, as well as merchandise for the home at similar savings. The Company had 573 stores at November 29, 2003, compared to 510 stores at the end of the same period last year.

SOURCE Ross Stores, Inc.

CONTACT: John G. Call, Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer,
+1-510-505-4315, or Katie Loughnot, Vice President, Investor Relations,
+1-510-505-4509, or, both of Ross Stores, Inc./