Retail stores operator Michaels Stores ( MIK) reported a 14% rise in its fourth-quarter profit.

The company earned $117 million, or 86 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with $103 million, or 75 cents a share, a year ago. Adjusted for items, earnings were 85 cents a share in the most recent quarter. On that basis, analysts polled by Thomson First Call were estimating earnings of 85 cents a share.

Fourth-quarter revenue rose 7.2% from a year-ago period to $1.27 billion. Analysts were expecting revenue of $1.27 billion in the most recent quarter.

The company expects earnings of 38 cents a share to 40 cents a share in the first quarter of fiscal 2006 and $2 a share to $2.05 a share for the full year. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call were looking for earnings of 40 cents a share for the first quarter and $2.04 a share for the full year.

Same-store sales for the quarter increased 2.4% on a 2.2% increase in average ticket and a 0.2% increase in transactions.

Operating profit rose 11.6% to $186.67 million in the fourth quarter while operating margin rose 60 basis points to 14.7%.

During fiscal 2006 the company said it plans to open 40 to 45 new stores, relocate and/or expand 14 stores and remodel 67 stores.

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