Operating income for the first nine months of fiscal 2013 increased 29% to $98.5 million, or 8.5% of sales, compared to $76.5 million, or 7.2% of sales, for the same period in fiscal 2012.

Balance Sheet and Share Repurchase Programs

As of the end of the third quarter, the Company remained in strong financial condition with $120.8 million of cash and cash equivalents. Inventory totaled $417.5 million, up 13.5% versus the end of last year’s third quarter. The planned increase was primarily due to additional inventory for the Company’s new e-Commerce business and slightly larger purchases of merchandise in select categories, including seasonal goods, to support higher sales. Capital expenditures for the first nine months totaled $57.7 million and were primarily used for new store openings, existing store fixtures and improvements, and infrastructure and technology development, including the Company’s new e-Commerce platform and point-of-sale system.

The Company reported today it has effectively completed its $100 million share repurchase program, which was announced on October 14, 2011. As of December 12, 2012, the Company had repurchased a total of 5,805,250 shares of its common stock under this share repurchase program at a weighted average cost of $17.17 per share for a total cost of approximately $99.7 million. During the third quarter ended November 24, 2012, the Company repurchased a total of 546,835 shares of its common stock at a weighted average cost of $19.14 per share for a total cost of approximately $10.5 million. Under this share repurchase program, the Company repurchased approximately 5.3% of its common stock outstanding.

The Company today announced its Board of Directors has authorized a new $100 million share repurchase program. The new share repurchase program is effective immediately and authorizes the repurchase of up to $100 million of the Company’s common stock in open market or private transactions. The timing of the repurchases will depend on several factors, including prevailing market conditions and prices.

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