Third quarter drives Williams-Sonoma into the red

Struggling US retail housewares giant Williams-Sonoma has today reported a loss and flagging sales in the third quarter.
The $11m loss compared with a profit of $27.1m in the same period a year earlier.

Sales for the quarter to November 2 slumped 16% to $752.1m from $895.1m in the previous year.

Revenue from stores fell to $424.4m from $494.3m, reflecting tough times across the Pottery Barn and Pottery Barn Kids brands in particular, but also the Williams-Sonoma and Williams-Sonoma Home brands. Like-for-like sales were down 21.4%.

Catalogue and Internet business declined 18.3% to $327.7m from $400.9m in the same period in 2007.

The third quarter results follow similarly dismal results in the second quarter, which wiped 29% off profits.

The company said it expected the poor trends to continue into next year.

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