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Earnings Slip at Hot Topic

At 11 cents a share, its profit matches estimates.
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First-quarter earnings edged lower at

Hot Topic


as overhead expenses rose a little faster than sales.

The goth outfitter earned $5.0 million, or 11 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with $5.3 million, or 11 cents a share, last year. Sales rose 17% from a year ago to $149.8 million, while cost of goods rose 17% to $98.6 million and overhead costs rose 21% to $43.4 million.

Analysts were forecasting earnings of 11 cents a share on sales of $151.1 million in the quarter.

Hot Topic is among a handful of highflying teen retailers that have come up against tough same-store sales comparisons this spring. Two weeks ago, the company said April comps rose just 0.9% last month, after jumping 4% in April of 2004.

The stock is up 25% in 2005, closing Wednesday at $20.50.