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NY & Co remains on-track to achieve plan for fall season
20
Nov '09
New York & Company, Inc., a specialty apparel chain with 592 retail stores, announced results for the third quarter ended October 31, 2009. For the third quarter of fiscal year 2009, net sales were $227.9 million, as compared to $249.0 million for the third quarter of fiscal year 2008. Comparable store sales for the third quarter of fiscal year 2009 decreased 8.4%, compared to a 14.0% decrease in the prior year third quarter. Net loss from continuing operations for the third quarter of fiscal year 2009 was $6.3 million, or $0.11 per diluted share, and included a non-operating charge of approximately $0.01 per diluted share related to the restructuring of the Company's real estate group. This compares to a net loss from continuing operations in the prior year of $8.0 million, or $0.13 per diluted share, which included a previously disclosed, non-operating charge of approximately $0.03 per diluted share related to management changes.

For the nine months ended October 31, 2009, net sales were $708.6 million, as compared to $814.8 million for the nine months ended November 1, 2008. Comparable store sales decreased 13.5% for the nine months ended October 31, 2009, as compared to a 7.6% decrease in the prior year period. Net loss from continuing operations for the nine months ended October 31, 2009 was $16.0 million, or $0.27 per diluted share, as compared to prior year net income from continuing operations of $7.3 million, or $0.12 per diluted share.

Richard P. Crystal, New York & Company's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, stated: “Third quarter results were in-line with our expectations and reflected a sequential improvement in our comparable store sales trend from the second quarter of this year. Merchandise margins in the third quarter improved from the year-ago period, and importantly were in-line with historical levels. Additionally, we continued to stringently manage our inventory and expenses with inventory per average store down 25% compared to last year. In October, we experienced the start of what we hope is a turnaround as we posted our strongest monthly sales comparisons in over twelve months, and this momentum has continued into the first two weeks of November. As a result, we remain on-track to achieve our plan for the fall season, as we expect to achieve profitability in the fourth quarter and believe our cumulative results for the fall season will approach breakeven levels.”

During the quarter, the Company continued to maintain tight control over inventory and remained focused on the execution of its restructuring and cost reduction program. As a result of these efforts, the Company was able to achieve the following:

• Merchandise margins improved by 110 basis points on top of the prior year results, which were in-line with historical levels. This improvement reflected a positive customer response to the Company's fall merchandise assortment, continued sourcing efficiencies, and controlled promotional activity.

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