Bon-Ton Stores reports Q4 profit

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York, Pa. Bon-Ton Stores returned to a fiscal fourth-quarter profit Wednesday, benefiting from lower charges, tight inventory management and cost-control efforts.

Bon-Ton reported that it earned $80.3 million for the period ended Jan. 30, compared with a loss of $87.7 million a year earlier.

Bon-Ton's impairment charge of $5.4 million was considerably lower than $25.9 million charge incurred in the prior-year period. The current quarter also included a favorable tax carryback of $6.3 million, while the year-ago period had a $108.5 million charge related to a deferred tax asset valuation allowance.

Selling, general and administrative expenses declined slightly to $269.1 million from $269.4 million.

Sales dipped 3% to $1 billion from $1.03 billion.

Same-store sales dropped 2.4% in the quarter.

For the year, Bon-Ton narrowed its loss to $4.1 million from a loss of $169.9 million in the previous year.

Annual sales slipped 5% to $2.96 billion from $3.13 billion, while same-store sales fell 5.4%.