Clothing supplier William Baird Plc admitted on Tuesday that sales of its women's wear brands were lower-than-expected in July and August and said it had been forced to slash prices to clear stock. The company said sales of its Windsmoor, Planet and Precis Petite brands were up two per cent in July on the year-ago period but plunged 14 per cent in August as it carried out "heavy promotional activity" which reduced margins.