BERNARD CHAUS WEATHERS LOSS

NEW YORK — Cost-cutting initiatives made a dent but were insufficient to reverse the effects of a hostile retail environment as Bernard Chaus Inc. suffered third-quarter losses of $949,000.
The loss for the quarter ended March 31, 3 cents on a per-share basis, compares with net income of $425,000, or 2 cents a share, in the prior-year period. Sales slipped 14.6 percent to $44.1 million from $51.6 million in 2000.
Nicholas DiPaolo, vice chairman and chief operating officer, noted in a statement that the positive reception given recent lines and expense-trimming efforts have led the firm to “expect a substantial improvement in Chaus’s financial performance for the full second half of fiscal 2001 compared to the year-ago period. Moreover, we are optimistic about the company’s prospects as we look forward to fiscal 2002.”
Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses declined 16.4 percent in the quarter.
Josephine Chaus, chief executive, noted in a statement that modifications made in the company’s lines were being reflected by improvements in sell-throughs at retail.
For the nine months, the producer of women’s casual and career apparel, based here, registered a loss of $5.6 million, or 20 cents a diluted share, against income of $5.4 million, or 20 cents, in the first three quarters of last year. SG&A expenses declined 8.9 percent. Sales contracted 22.5 percent to $115 million from $148.3 million.

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