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Press release from Business Wire

Stage Stores Reports Comparable Store Sales Increase of 11.1% for September

Monday, October 01, 2012

Stage Stores Reports Comparable Store Sales Increase of 11.1% for September16:26 EDT Monday, October 01, 2012 HOUSTON (Business Wire) -- Stage Stores, Inc. (NYSE: SSI) today reported that total sales for the five week September period ended September 29, 2012 increased 13.7% to $134 million from $118 million in the prior year five week September period ended October 1, 2011. Comparable store sales for the September period increased 11.1%. The Company noted that it was reporting its sales results earlier than normal due to its participation at the Telsey Advisory Group's Fall Consumer Conference on October 2, 2012. Every merchandise category achieved a comparable store sales increase during September, with footwear, home & gifts, junior sportswear, misses sportswear, petites and plus sizes leading the way with gains that exceeded the Company average. Geographically, the South Central, Southwest and Northeast regions all outperformed.         SALES SUMMARY               Comparable Store Sales           Total Sales   % Increase (Decrease)($ in Millions)Fiscal Period 2012       2011 2012       2011 1st Quarter 2.5 0.2 366 346 2nd Quarter 5.4 0.9 381 353 August 6.5 (1.7 ) 124 113 September 11.1 (0.7 ) 134 118 Quarter-To-Date 8.8 (1.2 ) 258 231 Year-To-Date (8 Mos) 5.2 0.1 1,005 930   Michael Glazer, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “September was an outstanding month for our company, as gains across all of our families of business drove our double-digit comparable store sales increase. September began with strong back-to-school sales and the positive momentum carried throughout the month, resulting in solid full price selling of our fall selections. Our customers are clearly reacting favorably to our merchandising and marketing initiatives, with even more excitement planned for the upcoming holiday season.” Store ActivityThe Company also reported today that it opened new Goody's stores in Morehead City, NC and Decatur, AL. New Steele's stores were also opened in Nacogdoches and Ft. Stockton, TX, Greenwood, MS and Emporia, KS. About Stage StoresStage Stores, Inc. operates primarily in small and mid-sized towns and communities. Its stores, which operate under the Bealls, Goody's, Palais Royal, Peebles, Stage and Steele's names, offer moderately priced, nationally recognized brand name apparel, accessories, cosmetics and footwear for the entire family. The Company operates 842 stores in 40 states. The Company also has an eCommerce website. For more information about Stage Stores, visit the Company's web site at www.stagestoresinc.com. Stage Stores, Inc.Bob Aronson, 800-579-2302Vice President, Investor Relations baronson@stagestores.com