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FBI sales drop 10.4% in second quarter

ST. LOUIS — Furniture Brands International reported a second-quarter net loss of $6.77 million as sales slid 10.4%.

The company, whose brands include Lane, Broyhill, Thomasville, Drexel Heritage, Henredon and Maitland-Smith, also said gross margins fell 0.7 percentage points to 24.1% due to clearance of older inventory, decreased retail margins and lower factory utilization.

Sales for the quarter ended June 30 totaled $265.5 million, down from $296.2 million in last year's second quarter.

The most recent quarterly loss, which equals 12 cents per share, compares with a loss of $6.65 million, or 12 cents per share, in the same quarter last year.

The company's quarterly operating loss of $5.82 million was essentially even with last year's second quarter.

Sales at its 48 company-owned Thomasville retail stores fell 4.8% to $25.6 million, while same-store sales slid 7%.

For the first six months of 2012, total sales were $552.7 million, down 7% from $594.1 million in the first half of 2011.

The six-month net loss was $6.4 million, or 12 cents per share. In the first half of 2011, the loss totaled $9.71 million, or 18 cents per share.

"We continue to make progress with our ongoing cost and efficiency efforts," said Ralph Scozzafava, chairman and CEO. "Our ability to deliver second quarter operating results that were flat to the prior year period despite the decreased sales volume is a result of these efforts."

He said the company is seeing broader acceptance of its new products, which contributed to an increased order backlog at the end of the quarter.

"We also remain disciplined on the capital allocation front as we work towards our goal of improving our operating results and generating positive free cash flow in 2012," he added.


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