Women's wear maker Bernard Chaus Inc has widened its fourth quarter net loss in what it described as a difficult climate "for our business and the industry in general."

For the fourth quarter to 30  June, net loss was $2.6m, or $0.07 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $1.1m, or $0.03 per diluted share the year before.

Revenues were down 18.7% to $29.6m from $36.4m.

Josephine Chaus, chairwoman and chief executive officer, said: "While our performance for the fourth quarter did not meet expectations, we are quite pleased with the year as a whole, as sales increased and gross margin percentage improved.

"By focusing on our three-pronged strategy of growing our branded, private label and licensed businesses, we continued to turn around the business and returned to profitability."

For the full fiscal 2007 year, the company posted a profit of $522,000, or $0.01 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $4.9m, or a loss of $0.13 per diluted share, the year before.

Full year revenues increased by 7.3% to $146.8m, from $136.8m last time.

Bernard Chaus makes career and casual sportswear under the Josephine Chaus, Chaus, Cynthia Steffe and Cynthia Cynthia Steffe trademarks, as well as private label. The company also makes a women's sportswear line under the Kenneth Cole Reaction label.