Retail Ventures charting negative territory

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Retail Ventures -- parent company of Value City, Filene’s Basement and DSW Show Warehouse -- posted a sharply wider loss today for the first quarter, as gross margin softened and same-store sales in all three divisions declined decisively.

Total sales for the quarter ended April 30 rose 5.2 percent to $680 million. But the company posted a net loss of $11.5 million, and diluted earnings per share moved to a loss of 32 cents from a loss of 6 cents during the year-ago period.Comps at Value City declined 7.9 percent on top of a 1.1 percent decline in last year’s first quarter. Comps at Filene’s Basement rose slightly, up 2.2 percent, against the tough comparison of a 15.2 percent gain in 2004’s first quarter. Comps at DSW were up 4.4 percent compared with 11 percent a year ago.

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