Tailored business attire retailer Men's Wearhouse said that sales for the five weeks and 22 weeks ended July 7, 2001 were $113.0 million and $519.6 million, respectively, reflecting increases of 0.5 per cent and 3.8 per cent over comparable prior year calendar periods.

Without giving effect to the holiday shift, sales for the five weeks ended July 7, 2001 decreased 3.3 per cent from sales of $116.9 million for the five weeks ended July 1, 2000, while sales for the 22 weeks ended July 7, 2001 increased 2.8 per cent from sales of $505.2 million for the 22 weeks ended July 1, 2000.

Comparable US store sales for the five weeks ended July 7, 2001 decreased 6.9 per cent versus a 6.9 per cent increase for the same five weeks in 2000. Year to date 2001 comparable store sales decreased 5.0 per cent compared with an increase of 5.5 per cent for year to date 2000.

The company's comparable Canadian (Moores Clothing for Men) store sales for the five weeks ended July 8, 2001 increased 10.1 per cent versus a 22.4 per cent increase for the same five weeks in 2000. Year to date comparable store sales for the 22 weeks ended July 8, 2001 increased 8.2 per cent compared to an increase of 4.1 per cent for year to date 2000.

"While our Canadian business remains solid, we continue to experience softness in our US business due mainly to the general economic and retail environment and softness in suit sales. Our dress/casual business at Men's Wearhouse stores continues to experience significant growth, but not at levels sufficient to offset these other factors," said George Zimmer, chairman and chief executive officer.

"We do not foresee any improvement in Men's Wearhouse store sales until the latter part of the third quarter. In addition, we anticipate a greater portion of our sales at Men's Wearhouse during our mid-year sale event, which runs from July 21st through August 19th, to be 'on sale' items and therefore anticipate lower than planned gross margins,'' he added.

"Based on these factors and the continuing softness in the economy and its impact on men's apparel sales, we expect our diluted earnings per share for the second quarter and full year of fiscal 2001 to be in the range of 27 to 29 cents and $2.02 to $2.05, respectively," he concluded.