Myer is indulging in a bit of market massaging ahead of the closing of the share offer tomorrow at 5pm.

The group yesterday revealed that its sales were on track, without giving up any meaningful basis for comparison. It said what it called “sales value” for the fourth quarter of 2008-09 rose 3.1% and that “total sales value for the first 12 weeks of FY 2010 grew in excess of this rate compared to the same period of last year.”

Well that’s a bit poor. If Woolies, Harvey Norman and JB Hi-Hi can release top line and same store/comparative sales figures in the past week for their first quarters, Myer should have been able to do that. And provide comparable figures for the 4th quarter of 2008-09 and comparable figures for the full financial year, just like all those other grown-up retailers.

It’s not good enough. Myer expects investors to subscribe, but the story it is telling (at the last minute, mind you) is flawed and inaccurate.

I wonder if that’s a sign the sales pitch is falling on deaf ears, or a cynical last-minute attempt to round up some stragglers and get them into the offer?

In case Myer needs help, this is how rival David Jones told the market recently how its 4th quarter sales went:

David Jones Limited (DJS) today reported total sales revenue of $512.3 million for the fourth quarter of the 2009 financial year (4Q09) being the period 26 April 2009 to 25 July 2009. This represents 0.6% growth on a total sales basis (4Q08 — $509.1 million).

On a “like-for-like” (LFL) basis sales growth in 4Q09 was -1.2%. If the sales from the Bourke Street store under refurbishment are excluded for the quarter, the underlying LFL result was slightly up on last year at 0.3%.

Notice the phrase, Like for Like (or LFL). Quite an adventurous piece of disclosure, don’t you think Myer?