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VALLEY EARNINGS

Quarterly Earnings Off 29% at House of Fabrics

December 10, 1985

Despite record sales, House of Fabrics' earnings fell 29% for the third quarter ended Oct. 31, contrasted with the same period a year ago, the Sherman Oaks-based company reported.

But the latest quarter did mark a return to profitability from the second quarter, in which House of Fabrics posted its first loss.

Third-quarter earnings were $2.8 million, or 42 cents a share, versus a record $4 million, or 60 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Sales in the third quarter were a record $77.5 million, up 3%.

"Operating results in the third quarter continued to be affected by the sluggish retailing climate," company Chairman David I. Sofro said. He said results were also affected by the need to replenish inventories that fell short in the second quarter.

For the first nine months of the fiscal year, earnings were $2.9 million, or 44 cents a share, contrasted with $7.4 million, or $1.12 a share, a year ago. Nine-month sales were $200.8 million, an increase from last year's record $196.3 million.

House of Fabrics, with 785 stores in 47 states, is the nation's largest chain of company-owned and operated retail fabric stores.

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