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Slight increase in expected gross margin at Wet Seal
08
Feb '08
The Wet Seal Inc, a leading specialty retailer to young women, reported net sales for the four-week period ended February 2, 2008, of $36.8 million, compared to net sales of $43.9 million reported for the five-week period ended February 3, 2007.

Comparable store sales declined 5.7% for the four-week period ended February 2, 2008, compared to the four-week period ended February 3, 2007. This was within the range of prior guidance of low to mid single digit comparable store sales decline for the month. The Company reported a 3.6% increase in comparable store sales in fiscal January last year.

For the 13-week period ended February 2, 2008, comparable store sales declined 1.4%, compared with a previously reported 3.1% increase in comparable store sales for the 14-week period ended February 3, 2007. Net sales for the 13-week period ended February 2, 2008 were $175.8 million, compared with previously reported net sales of $166.4 million for the 14-week period ended February 3, 2007.

The additional week in the prior year fiscal January increased total reported prior year net sales by $9.3 million.

Net sales for the periods ended February 2, 2008 do not include any "breakage" revenue for unredeemed gift cards or sales credits. The Company historically has not recognized breakage due to insufficient supporting history and data. However, the Company is completing analysis that may lead to concluding that breakage can now be estimated and should be recorded. Such recording would result in an adjustment to increase net sales for the 13-week period ended February 2, 2008.

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