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Francesca's EPS, sales tops

The boutique-style apparel and accessory store operator said Q3 EPS jumped 71% to 24 cents, beating views by 2 cents. Sales climbed 44% to $72 mil, above estimates of $71.24 mil. Same-store sales, or sales in stores open at least a year, rose nearly 17% by increased transactions — but the average transaction size remained the same. Gross profit widened 96 basis points to 52.61%. Superstorm Sandy had a minimal impact on Francesca's (FRAN), which sees Q4 EPS of 27-28 cents. Shares rose 0.7% to 27.