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LNT Q1 Loss Widens

Linens 'n Things reported a net loss of $130.6 million for the first quarter ended March 29, 2008, vs. a net loss of $58.2 million one year ago.

The loss includes $36.4 million in impairment charges to write down property, equipment and assets related to the pending closure of 120 stores.

Based on preliminary results, which LNT cautioned could be amended upon further review, first quarter gross margin was up 180 basis points to 39.2% of sales from 37.4% in the year-ago period. EBITDA (earnings before interest, income taxes, depreciation and amortization) was negative $38.2 million compared to negative $33.0 million in last year's first quarter.

LNT first quarter sales of $566.9 million were down 0.8%, with a comp decline of 5.7%. The retailer filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection May 2.

LNT said that the 30-day grace period it was granted to defer approximately $16.1 million in quarterly interest to the holders of $650 million in senior secured floating notes ended on the day of its filing, May 15, and that continued nonpayment could trigger an acceleration of various obligations under the notes.

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