NEW YORK — While Jones Apparel Group annual meetings are known for being brief, this year’s gathering could have been a record-breaker.

Peter Boneparth, chairman and chief executive officer of Jones, began the company’s seven-minute meeting at the J.P. Morgan Chase Conference Center here by telling shareholders “I am going to be especially short this morning since we are going through a process that limits what I can say.”

Boneparth, who would only refer to the company being up for sale as “the process,” continued on to say: “the overall tone of our company is quite solid, our business is healthy and I am excited about the future of this company.”

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