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UPDATE: Finish Line shares fall after sales report

March 6, 2008
Athletic-footwear retailer Finish Line Inc. said today its fourth-quarter same-store sales fell 6 percent, versus a 5.4-percent decline in the year-ago period.

Stock in the Indianapolis company fell 3.4 percent, to $3.99, following the news.

Same-store sales, or sales at stores open at least a year, is a key indicator of retailer performance since it measures growth at existing stores rather than newly opened ones.

Broken down by operation, the company's Finish Line stores reported a 5.4-percent decline in the quarter ended March 1, while Man Alive same-store sales tumbled 14.2 percent.

Total sales for the quarter fell 10 percent, to $382.8 million from $425.7 million, in the prior-year quarter, which included an extra week. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial on average expected sales of $398.3 million for the quarter.

For the full year, Finish Line said same-store sales dropped 4.7 percent, while total sales from continuing operations slipped 4 percent, to $1.28 billion from $1.33 billion.

Early this week, Finish Line and Genesco Inc., a mall retailer headquartered in Nashville, Tenn., agreed to break up a planned $1.5 billion acquisition.
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