Jones Apparel 1Q Profit Falls 59%

New York City Jones Apparel Group Inc. on Wednesday said its first-quarter profit declined 59%, as sales fell as the company exited some moderate sportswear lines.

Quarterly profit fell to $19.5 million from $47.8 million in the same period last year.

Revenue fell 10% to $975.4 million from $1.08 billion, but beat analyst expectations for revenue of $936.9 billion. Revenue was hurt by a restructuring, which had the company exit moderate sportswear lines, Jones Apparel said. Same-store sales fell 8.7%.

Jones Apparel, whose brands include Nine West and Anne Klein, said it tightened inventory control during the quarter but said markdowns at retailers was higher than the first quarter of 2007.

Jones Apparel also lowered the top end of its 2008 guidance "to match our retail customers' conservative plans for the back half of the year," said John T. McClain, company CFO, in a statement.