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June 22, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
Darden Restaurants Inc.'s efforts to spruce up Olive Garden's lagging sales, including national promotions and cost cuts, were “less effective than anticipated,” the company said while announcing its fiscal fourth-quarter earnings Friday. Similar tactics were also uninspiring at Darden's seafood chain, Red Lobster. After a brief respite during the spring, Italian brand Olive Garden returned to its pattern of poor same-store sales, which tumbled 1.8% over the quarter ended May 27 compared with a year earlier, while customer traffic fell 7.5% in May. Red Lobster's same-store sales slid 3.9% over the quarter and customer traffic in May slumped 7.8% With sales of $904 million, Olive Garden is Darden's largest chain.
September 19, 2012 | Bloomberg News
Intuit Inc. Chief Executive Brad Smith said the company didn't bring its "A game" last year and will speed up development of mobile software and undertake other initiatives to turn more online shoppers into paying customers. Refining products such as TurboTax and QuickBooks can bring Intuit more paying customers and translate into at least 5 percentage points of sales growth, Smith said at a meeting with financial analysts Tuesday at Intuit headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. "It was a solid year — it was not our best year," Smith said of fiscal 2012, which ended in July.
September 23, 2009 | Associated Press
Dan Brown's new novel has passed the 2 million mark and bested Bill Clinton's "My Life" in the record books. Doubleday announced Tuesday that hardcover, audio and e-book sales for "The Lost Symbol" topped 2 million copies for its first week of release in the United States, Britain and Canada. The total is "well over" 2 million for English-language editions worldwide, according to Doubleday spokeswoman Suzanne Herz, who declined to offer a specific number. Herz did say that around 5%, or 100,000 copies, of "The Lost Symbol" were sold as e-books.
August 21, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
The raunchy novels in the "Fifty Shades of Grey" trilogy are serving a purpose beyond riling up housewives. The erotic tomes are whipping -- so to speak -- sales at Barnes & Noble Inc. back into shape. The series by E.L. James -- often referred to as "mommy porn" for its themes of sexual submission and dominance -- helped boost the bookseller's first quarter, which ended July 28. Overall revenue at Barnes & Noble's nearly 700 bookstores and rose 2% to $1.1 billion in the quarter.
August 10, 2011 | By Andrea Chang, Los Angeles Times
American Apparel Inc. had a narrower loss and improved sales in its second quarter, the Los Angeles clothing maker and retailer said in an updated earnings filing. For the three months that ended June 30, the company reported a loss of $213,000, or flat earnings per share, compared with a loss of $14.7 million, or 21 cents, in the year-earlier period. Sales were flat overall and at stores open at least a year. The latter measure, known as same-store sales, is considered an important gauge of a retailer's health because it excludes store openings and closings.
July 22, 2010 | Reuters
U.S. existing home sales fell less sharply than expected to a three-month low in June, though the supply of unsold homes rose to the highest in almost a year, an industry group said Thursday. Sales fell 5.1 percent to an annual unit rate of 5.37 million units, the National Association of Realtors said. Economists polled by Reuters had expected an 8.1 percent decline to a 5.18 million pace in June. There were about 3.99 million homes for sale at the end of June, a level that would take about 8.9 months to deplete at the current sales pace.
December 19, 2010
Sabrina Azadi's article ["May I Help You?" Dec. 12] took me back to when I was a struggling college student in Philadelphia and I took a part-time salesclerk job at what was the revered John Wanamaker's department store. As part of the de rigueur "orientation," the sales manager of the salon presented her tips for closing a sale, and one that remained with me for all these years is to tell a customer that "you look like a million bucks in that dress. " Translation: "Who's ever seen a million bucks?
March 12, 2014 | By Andrew Khouri
Southern California home prices held steady last month while sales tumbled to a six-year low, further evidence that the market has stalled after a torrid rebound. The median home sale price in the six-county Southland inched up 0.8% from January to $383,000, research firm DataQuick said Wednesday. Prices shot up in the first half of 2013, but the region's median has been about the same since June. Still, the February median price was 19.7% higher than the same month in 2013 because of rapid price gains early last year.
June 7, 2013 | By Meg James
The broadcast television advertising market is in full swing, with the top-rated CBS network once again leading the pack. By Friday afternoon, CBS was close to finishing its advance advertising sales for the 2013-14 television season, notching rate increases of 6% to 7.5%, according to people familiar with the negotiations. CBS is expected to wrap the annual auction with $2.5 billion in commitments for prime-time commercials. A year ago, CBS finished the auction with higher rate increases -- ranging from 8% to 10% -- for a total haul of $2.6 billion.
October 30, 2012 | By Stuart Pfeifer
Allergan Inc. is considering selling its Lap-Band weight-loss unit amid rapidly declining sales and a swarm of negative publicity about patient deaths and a criminal investigation of one of its former customers. Word of the potential sale came the same day the company disclosed that sales of the Lap-Band fell for the fifth consecutive quarter. The company reported $37.4 million in Lap-Band sales for the third quarter of 2012, a 25% decline from one year ago and 53% less than it sold in the third quarter of 2008.
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