By  on November 19, 2007

AnnTaylor Stores Corp. posted a 4 percent rise in third-quarter earnings, but slashed its full-year forecast because of economic uncertainty.

For the three months ended Nov. 3, earnings increased to $40.8 million, or 66 cents a diluted share, from $39.3 million, or 54 cents, in the year-ago period. The company said the growth in earnings is due partly to the benefit of its share repurchase program. Sales for the quarter climbed 6 percent to $600.9 million from $566.3 million last year, while total same-store sales fell 0.4 percent. By division, comps at Ann Taylor declined 4.4 percent and Loft dipped 0.3 percent.

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