NEW YORK — Abercrombie & Fitch reported a better-than-expected 2 percent increase in its March comparable-store sales, its first positive result this year.
The company attributed the increase to the shift in the Easter calendar into March this year, as well as a sales event starting five days ahead of last year. As a result, the New Albany, Ohio-based retailer said it expects April comps to be negative.
Women’s comps were the strongest, with knit tops, shirts, skirts and accessories selling best.
A&F, which operates 499 stores, said it remains comfortable with its previous announced guidance of flat first- and second-quarter earnings. Last year, the firm recorded earnings per share of 20 cents and 24 cents, respectively, in the first two quarters.
A&F’s comps were down 14 percent in January and 9 percent in February.

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