The Bon-Ton Stores Inc. on Thursday reported first quarter total sales fell 1.4 percent, from $649.9 million to $640.8 million when compared with the same period last year.
Net loss was $40.8 million, or $2.23 per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $36 million, or $2.01 per diluted share, for the first quarter of 2011. Operating loss was $18.5 million, compared with an operating loss of $2.5 million for the first three months of last year.
President and CEO Brendan Hoffman said sales from a shift in the chain's Community Day event from February to the end of April exceeded the previous year but had a negative effect on April sales leading up to the event.
He said the company responded quickly with "aggressive markdowns" and is identifying other strategies to improve performance.
Gross margin rate was 34.3 percent of net sales, compared with 35.5 percent in the first quarter of fiscal 2011.
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