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Home still a hit at Ross 

Pleasanton, Calif. – Breaking a trend seen throughout much of the market in recent months, home was among the top-performing departments during the fourth quarter at Ross Stores, the company reported today. (The top performers: dresses and shoes.)

For the quarter ended Feb. 2, Ross reported earnings of $94.5 million, or 70 cents per share, up 1.5% over the previous year’s fourth quarter. Sales rose 3$ to $1.65 billion, with a 2% climb in comps.

Earnings for the full fiscal year were $261.1 million, or $1.90 per share, up 8.1% over the previous year. Sales jumped 7% to $5.975 billion. Comps rose 1%.

“Strong operating cash flows during 2007 continued to provide the resources to make capital investments in new store growth and infrastructure, and fund our ongoing stock repurchase and dividend programs. During the year, we invested $236 million in capital, which supported the addition of 67 net new Ross locations, 26 dd's Discounts stores, distribution network projects and other various information technology and infrastructure investments,” said Michael Balmuth, vice chairman, president and ceo.

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