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Furniture Brands International's CEO Discusses Q3 2011 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

If you have a copy of yesterday’s press release, you may obtain one, if you do not have a copy, you may obtain one along with copies of prior press releases and past SEC filings by linking through to the Investor Relations page of our website,

Now, on to our financial results. As reported in last evening’s financial results press release, total sales were $258 million for the third, a decrease of 5.1% over the same period last year. Gross margin for the quarter was 22.3%, down compared to the 24.8% reported last year.

Cost of goods sold of $200.5 million for the quarter included $2.8 million in charges associated with our cost reduction actions. A decrease in gross margin on a year-over-year basis excluding the $2.8 million in charges was driven largely by a timing difference between raw material cost increases, and the initiatives put in place to mitigate their impact.

SG&A expenses totaled $75 million for the third quarter, and included $4.7 million in charges associated with the cost reduction actions. Excluding the charges, this was relatively flat to the $70.7 million in SG&A reported in the third quarter of 2010. About 70% of the approximately $30 million in future annual cost savings we announced will be realized in the SG&A line. We will only realize a partial benefit from these savings in the fourth quarter reflecting the timing of the impact of these actions.

Beginning next year, we expect a quarterly base SG&A run rate of approximately $73 million to $77 million that fully reflects the impact of these cost savings. The base SG&A run rate will flex depending on items like brand support activities and increases or decreases in incentive compensation.

On the retail side of our business, the 45 Thomasville stores that we have operated for more than 15 months showed a same-store sales increase of 5% this quarter as compared to 22% same-store sales increase in the third quarter of 2010.

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