By  on December 11, 2009

Christopher & Banks Corp. said late Thursday that cost controls and a renewed emphasis on value helped it post better-than-expected preliminary third-quarter results.

According to the Minneapolis-based firm, third-quarter earnings, which will be reported on Jan. 6, are expected to be between 19 cents and 21 cents a diluted share, which assumes an anticipated effective tax rate for the period of 22 percent. This compares with a 4-cent loss in the year-ago quarter. Sales are expected to total about $132 million, versus $143 million in 2008, as quarterly same-store sales slid 8.4 percent. Analysts projected a loss of 5 cents on sales of $123.9 million. Gross margin is expected to improve about 500 basis points from year-ago levels, to about 40.7 percent.

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