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Dillard’s loss widens

Little Rock, Ark. – Looking to cut costs amid slumping gross margins and slowing sales, Dillard’s today said it will pare its assortments, reducing product duplication among vendors and eliminating under-performing brands.

“We continue to take aggressive action to navigate these challenging times,” said ceo William Dillard II.

The 317-unit department store posted a loss for the third quarter ended Nov. 1 of $56.0 million, or 76 cents per share. In last year’s third quarter, Dillard’s loss was $11.3 million, or 15 cents per share.

Gross margin as a percent of sales fell 390 basis points, largely due to markdowns, the company said.

Sales fell 10% to $1.508 billion, with comps down 9%.

Dillard’s reported that expected availability on its $1.2 billion revolving credit facility following the company’s peak borrowing requirement remains in excess of $500 million.

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