Nordstrom bled red ink in the three months ended May 1 despite soaring sales.

The Seattle retailer’s loss in its fiscal first quarter narrowed to $166 million, or $1.05 a share, and included an after-tax debt refinancing charge of $64 million. That compares to a loss of $521 million, or $3.33 a share, in the year-ago period, which included after-tax charges of $173 million tied to COVID-19.

Net sales rose to $2.92 billion, up 44% from $2.03 billion a year earlier, when Nordstrom stores were temporarily closed for about half of the period because of pandemic lockdowns. Sales were still down 13% compared with the same period in the company’s fiscal 2019.

“We are encouraged by sales trends both in our stores and our digital business, supported by an improving consumer environment and strong execution,” said CEO Erik Nordstrom. “Looking ahead to summer, we are well-positioned to continue to capitalize on pent-up demand.”

Nordstrom reaffirmed Tuesday that it expects its fiscal 2021 revenue, which includes retail sales and revenue from credit cards, to increase more than 25%.

The company reported its financial results after markets closed Tuesday. Its shares fell nearly 6% in after-hours trading.

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