NEW YORK — Charming Shoppes announced Tuesday that restructuring in 2002 helped it post a fourth-quarter profit and that a new round of cost-cutting initiatives in 2003, including the elimination of about 285 jobs, should ultimately result in annualized savings of $45 million.

The Bensalem, Pa.-based plus-sized specialty retailer — which operates 2,248 stores under the Lane Bryant, Fashion Bug and Catherine’s Plus Sizes chains — also lowered its earnings forecast for the first quarter based on below-plan sales in February. It said it is now anticipating earnings per share to land between 8 and 10 cents, below earlier guidance of 11 to 12 cents, with comparable-store sales projected in the negative mid-single-digit range for the period.

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