First quarter loss at teen clothing retailer Hot Topic Inc has widened on lower sales at its namesake stores and costs relating to an online music venture.

First quarter net loss widened to $1.4m, or $0.03 per share, compared with a net loss of $0.8m, or $0.02 per share in the same period last year.

For the 13 weeks to 3 May, total sales rose 1.1% to $159.0m from $157.3m, with a 14.6% rise in sales at the Torrid chain helping to offset a 2.5% drop at the Hot Topic stores.

Total company comparable store sales fell 2.8%, dropping 4.4% at Hot Topic but rising 7.3% at Torrid.
The company, which sells music-inspired apparel and accessories through 686 Hot Topic stores and 154 Torrid stores, expects second quarter loss per share to be in the range of $0.02 to $0.04, compared to a loss per share of $0.04 last year.