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GILDAN BOOSTS QUARTERLY GUIDANCE

NEW YORK -- Gildan Activewear Inc. raised its earnings per share and sales forecast for both the current third quarter and the full fiscal year.<P>The Montreal-based maker of T-shirts, golf shirts and sweatshirts now expects its third-quarter EPS to...

NEW YORK — Gildan Activewear Inc. raised its earnings per share and sales forecast for both the current third quarter and the full fiscal year.

The Montreal-based maker of T-shirts, golf shirts and sweatshirts now expects its third-quarter EPS to range between 55 and 58 cents a diluted share on sales of roughly $122.5 million, versus its previous forecast of 48 and 52 cents on sales of $112.8 million to $116 million. In the comparable period last year, the company reported EPS of 35 cents. Dollar figures are converted from the Canadian dollar at current exchange.

The more favorable results reflect stronger than anticipated overall market conditions for activewear, combined with the company’s strong market share performance in all market segments, the successful ramp-up of its integrated yarn-spinning operations at Long Sault, Ontario, and exceeding targeted reductions in working capital levels, Gildan said in a statement.

Gildan also said it expects to generate a minimum of $12.9 million of free cash flow in the third quarter, after capital expenditures.

For the full year, Gildan said it expects to report EPS in the range of $1.35 to $1.39 a share on sales of $373.9 million to $377.1 million, compared with its recent estimate of $1.26 to $1.29 on sales of $364.2 million to $370.7 million.