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Fiscal Q3 sales marginally down at Aeropostale
Dec '11
Aeropostale Inc., a mall-based specialty retailer of active and casual apparel for young women and men, reported results for the third quarter ended October 29, 2011.

Third Quarter Results
Diluted net earnings for the third quarter of fiscal 2011 were $0.30 per diluted share. The Company reported net earnings of $0.63 per diluted share in the third quarter last year. The prior year net earnings included a previously disclosed after-tax charge of approximately $3.9 million, or $0.04 per diluted share, resulting from the related third quarter retirement plan payment to its Chairman and former Chief Executive Officer.

For the third quarter of fiscal 2011, total net sales decreased 1% to $596.5 million, from $602.8 million in the year ago period. Same store sales for the third quarter decreased 9%, compared to essentially flat same store sales last year.

Total net sales for the Company's e-commerce business for the third quarter of fiscal 2011 increased 19% to $45.7 million, from $38.3 million in the year ago period.

Cash Position and Share Repurchase Program
The Company ended the quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $109.4 million, and no debt. The Company currently has $145.2 million of availability remaining under its share repurchase program.

Store Growth and Capital Spending
The Company opened 7 Aeropostale and 6 P.S. from Aeropostale stores during the quarter. For the third quarter the company incurred $17.6 million in capital expenditures.

Fourth Quarter Guidance
The Company announced its earnings guidance for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. The Company expects earnings in the range of $0.35 to $0.38 per diluted share for the fourth quarter. The Company achieved diluted earnings per share of $0.95 in the fourth quarter last year.

Thomas P. Johnson, Chief Executive Officer, commented, "We are making incremental progress on our strategic initiatives by bringing more color and fashion to our merchandise assortment, managing our inventories appropriately and controlling our expenses carefully. However, we are not satisfied with our overall performance, and we remain cautious in our outlook.

“The retail environment remains incredibly promotional with many teen retailers increasing both the depth and breadth of their promotions. Additionally, unemployment remains high and there is continued uncertainty about the overall economic environment. Near-term we are focused on executing our holiday initiatives and long-term we remain committed to improving our financial performance as well as investing in future growth."

Aeropostale Inc. is a mall-based, specialty retailer of casual apparel and accessories, principally targeting 14 to 17 year-old young women and men through its Aeropostale stores and 4 to 12 year-old kids through its P.S. from Aeropostale stores.

Aeropostale Inc

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