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Finish Line net sales of same-store drops 2% for Q2

Aug '05
Nation's leading athletic specialty retailers The Finish Line Inc reported net sales of $341.6 million for the thirteen weeks ended August 27, 2005 ("2nd quarter" or "Q2"), an increase of 9 percent (nine percent) over net sales of $312.2 million for Q2 last year ("Q2 LY").

Comparable store net sales for Q2 decreased 2 percent (negative two percent) as compared to an increase of 6 percent (six percent) reported for the comparable thirteen-week period last year.

The Company is lowering Q2 earnings guidance due to the decrease in sales, product margin pressure resulting from a more promotional environment, as well as negative leverage on occupancy costs and selling, general and administrative expenses ("SG&A"). SG&A was negatively affected by a reserve of $1.5 million, or $.02 per share after taxes, related to legal matters regarding alleged civil violations of California wage and hour laws.

The Company's new guidance for diluted earnings per share for Q2 is a range of $.37 to $.39 compared to previous guidance of $.48 to $.50 per diluted share. The Company earned $.42 per diluted share for Q2 LY.

On a year-to-date basis, for the twenty-six weeks ended August 27, 2005, net sales were $632.9 million, an increase of 11 percent (eleven percent) over net sales of $570.1 million reported for the twenty-six week period last year ended August 28, 2004. Year-to-date comparable store net sales were flat (zero percent) as compared to the 10 percent (ten percent) increase reported for the first half of last year.

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