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Children's Place lowers October outlook


SECAUCUS, N.J. The Children's Place Retail Stores today announced that it is lowering its outlook for the month of Ocotber, following less than stellar September results.

The company reported a comparable-store sales decrease of approximately 3% for the fiscal month of September, compared with a 16% increase last year. Total sales for the company were up by about 4% to $210.3 million from last year.

In light of these results, Children's Place said that it now anticipates that earnings per share for the third quarter of fiscal 2007 will come in at least 60% below the low end of its previous guidance of 94 cents to $1.02 given on Aug. 23.

The company added that assuming that current sales and margin trends continue into the fourth quarter, its earnings per share will be significantly below the low end of its previous fourth quarter and full year earnings per share guidance of $1.79 to $1.86 and $2.25 to $2.40, respectively.

"Clearly we are disappointed with current business trends and our outlook for the second half of the year,'' said Chuck Crovitz, interim ceo of The Children's Place Retail Stores. "Our results primarily reflect inventory levels at both brands that are higher than we would like given current sales trends, particularly at The Children's Place brand. As a result, we had to take a substantial amount of unplanned markdowns during September, resulting in merchandise margins well below our plans. At this time, we believe these trends are likely to continue through the remainder of the year.''

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