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Havertys sales drop in Q1

BY Dan Berthiaume

Atlanta – Havertys reported a 2.5% drop in sales during the first quarter of fiscal 2014 compared to the same period in the prior year, falling to $181.4 million from $186.1 million. Same-store sales declined 0.9%.

Clarence H. Smith, chairman, president and CEO of Havertys, said severe winter weather did not negatively impact all of Havertys locations.

"Our first quarter total sales were 2.5% below last year with comparable store sales down slightly,” said Smith. “Last year’s first quarter comparable store sales were up 11.5%. The severe winter weather did not impact 30 of our more southern locations, which posted increased comparable store sales of 7.3% for the quarter. We have not altered our promotional stance and gross profit product margins should be in line with our previous guidance.”

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The Wet Seal lowers director compensation, board size

BY Dan Berthiaume

Foothill Ranch, Calif. — The board of directors of Wet Seal Inc. has decided to reduce the cash compensation for its directors by 20% for the remainder of fiscal 2014. Wet Seal will also reduce the number of director nominees to be elected at its upcoming annual meeting from nine to seven.

Kathy Bronstein recently resigned from The Wet Seal’s board of directors, effective April 4.

“By reducing director compensation and the number of directors nominated for election at our 2014 annual meeting, the board is doing its part to ensure it can respond quickly to issues as they arise and support the cost reduction efforts already taken by management,” said Lynda Davey, non-executive chairman of The Wet Seal’s board of directors.

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Home Depot named EPA Energy Star partner of the year

BY Dan Berthiaume

Atlanta — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has named The Home Depot as a 2014 Energy Star Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence for its outstanding contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions through promotion of energy-efficient products. The Home Depot, an Energy Star partner since 2001, will be honored for its leadership in its long-term commitment to energy efficiency through promotion of energy-efficient products that earn the Energy Star, the government-backed symbol of energy efficiency.

The Home Depot is receiving the Energy Star Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence recognition for engaging every aspect of its retail business, from increasing its Energy Star product assortment to marketing and promotions, to building consumer awareness of and demand for Energy Star. Through the sale of Energy Star products in 2013, The Home Depot helped its customers save nearly $770 million in annual utility costs and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 4.7 million metric tons.

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