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Coldwater Creek narrows loss

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New York City Coldwater Creek on Wednesday posted a narrower fourth-quarter loss that still missed analysts' expectations.

The women's apparel maker said losses narrowed to $9.7 million in the three months ended Jan. 30. In the year-ago period, the company lost $18.6 million.

Sales rose 12% to $318.4 million from the year-ago quarter.

"Our fourth-quarter results were significantly ahead of the prior year as we began to see an improvement in our comparable-store sales and direct revenue, as well as a modest expansion in merchandise margin," chief executive Dennis Pence said in a prepared statement.

The company said comparable-store sales in its premium stores rose 8.9% in the quarter, versus the last quarter of 2008.

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