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Hartmarx declares Q2 fiscal 2006 earnings guidance

Jun '06
Branded clothier Hartmarx Corporation reported operating results for its second quarter and six months ended May 31, 2006. Second quarter revenues were $152.6 million compared to $145.7 million in 2005. Net earnings were $3.9 million or $.10 per diluted share in the current period compared to net earnings of $5.4 million or $.15 per diluted share last year.

For the six months, revenues increased to $296.8 million from $289.6 million in 2005. Net earnings were $6.5 million or $.17 per diluted share compared to net earnings of $9.6 million or $.26 per diluted share in 2005.

Homi B. Patel, chairman and chief executive officer of Hartmarx, commented, "Our second quarter and year-to-date results are extremely disappointing and below our internal plans. For the first time in five years, we will be lowering the annual earnings guidance established at the beginning of the year. Frankly, we find this unacceptable.

"The ongoing consolidation and other ownership changes in the mainstream department store channel resulted in lower margins in the moderate priced tailored clothing product category. We experienced more off-price sales and customer allowances than previously anticipated.

The current intensely competitive retail environment in this channel has continued longer than originally expected and does not show signs of improving in the immediate future. We are taking immediate actions to cut operating expenses, reduce inventories to generate cashand prune those programs that are not contributing sufficient incremental margins. We believe that these steps should result in significant earnings improvement for 2007 and put us back on track towards our long-term earnings objectives

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