Specialty apparel retailer The Wet Seal Inc on Thursday reported a big jump in first quarter earnings as it was boosted by an 8.2 per cent surge in same-store sales. The California-based operator of 581 stores said earnings adjusted for a three-for-two stock split rose to 28 cents per share from 18 cents per share in the year-ago period. Net sales climbed 13.6 per cent to $156.6m from $137.9m in 2001.