MACBETH IN COURT:Barneys New York said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it believes there is no merit to the lawsuit filed in July by Maggie B. MacBeth. The lawsuit, which seeks class-action status, was filed in a San Diego Superior Court and, according to the SEC filing, alleged violations of California’s civil code and business and professions code regarding the retailer’s request for certain information about MacBeth, a customer at a Barneys store. A source familiar with the lawsuit said that the information request pertained to personal information about the plaintiff. Under the statute, Barneys said, MacBeth and others like herself are entitled to recover fines up to a maximum of $250 for the first violation and up to $1,000 for each subsequent violation.

LERNER MERCHANT: Steven Newman, former president of apparel at Eddie Bauer, has joined Lerner New York as executive vice president of merchandising, WWD has learned. Newman will serve as Lerner’s top merchant, reporting to Richard Crystal, president and chief executive of Lerner’s, which for official purposes is calling itself Lerner New York/New York & Company. The chain, a division of Limited Brands, has begun converting stores and labels to the New York & Company name. Newman succeeds Jackie Corso, who left earlier this year. Newman’s résumé includes president of Brooks Brothers brand stores and executive vice president for Brooks Brothers outlets. Before that, he was merchandising vice president for tops at Ann Taylor, a Gap general merchandise manager for girls, and a Macy’s buyer, among other posts. At Eddie Bauer, he oversaw a $1.6 billion apparel business.

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