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Hampshire Loss Widens in Second Quarter

Stock again up in wake of settlement with former CEO.

Hampshire Group Ltd.’s second-quarter loss more than doubled on
flat sales.

Despite the decline in its bottom line, shares of Hampshire rose $1.30, or 16.9 percent, to close at $9 on Wednesday. It was the second consecutive day of double-digit percentage increases for the stock after Monday’s disclosure that Hampshire and former chief executive officer Ludwig Kuttner had settled a dispute resulting from an audit committee investigation into Kuttner’s business expenses and alleged mismanagement and tax evasion. He dropped a wrongful dismissal lawsuit and Hampshire withdrew its lawsuit against Kuttner.

For the three months ended June 28, the Anderson, S.C.-based sweater and sportswear marketer reported a second-quarter net loss of $5 million, or 64 cents a diluted share, versus a loss of $2.2 million, or 29 cents, in the same period last year. Excluding results from the Shane Hunter subsidiary, which has been divested, the loss from continuing operations was $3.1 million, or 40 cents, against a loss of $1.4 million, or 11 cents.

Sales rose 0.6 percent to $32.9 million from $32.7 million as higher average selling prices offset a decline in unit volume.

For the six-month period, the company reported a net loss of $8.8 million, or $1.12 a share, a 46.6 percent increase from a loss of $6 million, or 77 cents a diluted share, for the first half of 2007.

Sales for the six-month period fell 0.8 percent to $72.6 million from $73.2 million.