NEW YORK — An insurance payment helped boost Syms Corp.’s third-quarter income by 77.2 percent, despite a slight dip in sales.

This story first appeared in the December 24, 2002 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

The Secaucus, N.J.-based off-price apparel retailer said income amounted to $753,000, or 5 cents a diluted share, for the three months ended Nov. 30. Results include $270,000 from an insurance recovery payment. Last year, Syms reported income of $425,000, or 3 cents.

Sales slid 2.4 percent to $73.3 million against sales of $75 million in the corresponding quarter last year, but increased 1.9 percent on a same-store sales basis.

For the nine months, the firm, which operates 40 doors, said its loss doubled to $4.7 million, or 30 cents, compared with a loss of $2.4 million, or 15 cents, for the corresponding period last year. Results for this year include a $4 million charge taken in the second quarter for the closing of its downtown Chicago store. Sales slipped 2.7 percent to $206.3 million from $211.9 million, while comps were flat, increasing 0.2 percent.

Looking at the balance sheet, the company ended the period with more cash on hand. Cash assets increased 24.9 percent to $18.2 million from $14.6 million, while inventory decreased 4.7 percent to $111.4 million from $116.9 million.

Syms also said it has a potential rent liability for the remainder of the nine-year lease term and has recognized rent due of three months.