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Rex Sales, Comps Climb

11/30/2005 09:39:00 AM Eastern

Dayton, Ohio — Specialty retailer Rex Stores reported a 4.2 percent rise in net sales for its fiscal third quarter, climbing to $94.3 million from a year-ago $90.5 million, while comp-store sales moved up 4.6 percent.

Rex net income in the third quarter more than doubled, to $6.9 million from a year-earlier $3.4 million.

The retailer reported income from continuing operations before income taxes increased 122 percent, hitting $9.2 million, up from $4.1 million year-on-year. This increase reflects income of $8.4 million from synthetic fuel investments, including a $1.2 million gain related to the sale during the third quarter of the company’s interest in a synthetic fuel limited partnership. This compares with income from synthetic fuel investments of $5.2 million in the third quarter of 2004.

“We are very pleased with the third quarter results as they extended the company’s momentum from the first half of the fiscal year,” said Stuart Rose, chairman/CEO. “We would like to recognize all of our employees that were impacted by the hurricanes and their tireless efforts which ensured that our stores are operational and ready for the holiday selling season.”

Net sales for the nine months moved up 3 percent, reaching $267 million, compared with $259.2 million the previous year. Comp-store sales in the nine months increased 3.7 percent.

Net income for the nine months more than doubled, hitting $21.7 million, up from $10.8 million in 2004.

Income from continuing operations before income taxes for the nine months jumped 112 percent, to $26.9 million from a year-earlier $12.7 million. This increase reflects investment income of $24.8 million, compared with $13.8 million the previous year.

During the third quarter, Rex purchased about 455,300 shares of common stock in open-market transactions. The company purchased an additional 119,100 shares subsequent to the close of the third quarter.

Rex now has about 769,245 shares remaining available to purchase under its stock buy-back plan, which reflects expansion of share repurchase authorization to 1 million shares during the third quarter, and to share repurchase activity during and subsequent to the same time frame.