NEW YORK — Blair Corp. said a significant reduction in expenses and cost of goods sold paved the way to third-quarter profitability against a prior-year loss.

For the three months ended Sept. 30, the Warren, Pa.-based company steered its way to net income of $279,386, or 3 cents a diluted share, reversing a loss of $3.3 million, or 42 cents, in the same period last year. Sales notched down 4.2 percent to $117.8 million from $123 million.

"Blair’s net results were achieved by a significant reduction in overall operating expenses and cost of goods sold," Bryan Flanagan, chief financial officer, said in a statement. "The increase reflects the company’s ability to purchase merchandise more cost effectively and better manage inventory."

For the nine months, income skyrocketed over sixfold to $12.9 million, or $1.61 a diluted share, compared with income of $1.9 million, or 24 cents, in the year-ago period. Sales fell 4.7 percent to $400.6 million from $420.2 million.

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