Women's clothing retailer Talbots Inc yesterday (3 May) slashed its first quarter earnings per share outlook on significantly weaker than expected sales of the Talbots brand in April.

The Hingham, Massachusetts-based firm, said sales for the quarter ending 5 May are likely to be in the range of $0.07 to $0.11, compared to its previous forecast of $0.36 - $0.43 earnings per share.

The retailer, whose stores operate under the Talbots and J Jill brand names, added that total same-store sales are expected to be negative low to mid single digits for the first quarter, compared to its previously announced expectation of positive low single digits.