American Eagle Outfitters

( AEOS), a clothing retailer, said Wednesday its July sales rose 12% from the year-ago period to $197.4 million.

Same-store sales for the month increased 7%.

The company raised its earnings guidance for the second quarter ended July 29, on strong July performance. It now expects second-quarter earnings of 45 cents a share to 46 cents a share, including stock option expense of 1 cent a share, compared with earlier forecast of 41 cents a share to 43 cents a share. Analysts were expecting earnings of 43 cents a share in the second quarter.

Total sales for the second quarter rose 17% from a year ago to $602.3 million. Same-store sales for the quarter increased 10%. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call were expecting second-quarter sales of $593.2 million.

July performance demonstrated a favorable customer response to an on-trend back-to-school assortment and continued momentum of the AE brand, the Warrendale, Pa.-based company said.

Shares rose 90 cents early Thursday to $32.30.

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