Women's apparel designer and marketer Bernard Chaus Inc on Friday revealed it swung to a profit during the fourth quarter as improved margins and lower costs boosted results.

The New York-based company, whose casual wear and sports wear brands include the Josephine Chaus Collection and Josephine Chaus Studio, posted net income of $1.9m versus a net loss of $2m in 2001.

Its latest results include a tax benefit of $953,000, while revenue fell slightly to 32.7m from $34.5m.

It added for the full year, its net loss narrowed to $2.2m from $7.6m. Revenue slipped to $145.8m from $149.5m.

Chairman and CEO, Josephine Chaus, commented: "Chaus generated a significant improvement in its results for the fourth quarter and second half of fiscal 2002, consistent with our previously announced expectations.

"This performance was driven by higher margins, reflecting actions we have taken to source our products more cost efficiently, coupled with a considerable reduction in overhead expense. These initiatives enabled us to increase profitability despite the challenges of the current retail environment."