Accessory footwear maker RG Barry Corporation has narrowed its net loss for the fourth quarter to US$1.7m, from a net loss of $4.1m in the equivalent period last year.

Fourth quarter 2006 results included $2.5m in restructuring and asset impairment charges related to the settlement of a long-term lease obligation.

Fourth quarter net sales were flat at $14.1m, versus $14.0m in the comparable quarter last year.

For the fiscal year 2007, net sales from continuing operations were $105.3m, an increase of 7.9% over fiscal year 2005, the company's last full fiscal year prior to changing its year-end to the Saturday closest to 30 June, it said.

Net earnings for the year on this basis were $25.1m, compared to consolidated net earnings of $8.0m in fiscal 2005, reflecting a one-time net tax benefit of approximately $13.7m from the reversal of the company's deferred tax asset valuation allowance.

"Fiscal year 2007 was an excellent year for us," said RG Barry Corporation president and CEO Greg Tunney. "We executed at a high level in many areas of our business and consistently met or outpaced our performance expectations despite what was a very disappointing year for many of our competitors.

"The flexible business model for our core slipper business has now performed well in both the healthy holiday retail environment of 2005 and the lackluster 2006 holiday selling season. While this area of our business continues to evolve, we are confident in our ability to remain the undisputed leader in the slipper segment of the accessory footwear business.

The company is projecting net sales to increase 4-8% during fiscal year 2008.