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Ascena Plunges as Ann Taylor Parent Issues Dismal Forecast

M. Corey Goldman

plunged on Friday after the owner of Ann Taylor, Justice and Dressbarn said fiscal third-quarter results will miss analysts' estimates and said it was less confident of future sales. Of concern for investors, however, was Ascena's revised fiscal third-quarter guidance, which the company said will now be a loss of between 35 cents and 45 cents - significantly steeper than the break-even figure analysts surveyed by FactSet had been expecting. "While we believe the challenging selling environment is the result of macro headwinds impacting our sector, our third-quarter outlook represents an unacceptable profit shortfall to the expectations we shared at the beginning of our fiscal year," CEO David Jaffe said in a statement.