Leading off-price causal apparel retailer Factory 2-U Stores on Thursday posted a slight fall in same-store sales for February to $34 million, compared to $34.2m in the same month last year.

The San Diego-based retail chain added in a statement that comparable store sales for the four-week period ended March 2, 2002 fell 10.2 per cent versus a fall of 4.9 per cent for the same period last year.

Mike Searles, chairman and CEO, said: "In spite of lower inventory levels and reduced advertising, women's and junior's sportswear posted positive mid single-digit comparable store sales while children's was negative low single-digit and home was negative high single-digit comparable store sales.

"Men's, our poorest performer, was down 25 per cent on a comparable store basis as our core consumer continues to cut back on purchases for this category. Our effort to introduce the Factory 2-U concept to newer consumers has begun and we expect to see a lift in our sales performance as we approach Easter which is two weeks earlier this year."