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Toys R Us 1st-quarter loss widens

WAYNE, N.J. (AP) -- Toys R Us said Thursday that its first-quarter loss widened as it discounted toys to clear out inventory at its U.S. stores.

The toy store chain discounted to clear out space for new holiday toys expected later this year, said CEO Antonio Urcelay.

The privately held company endured a harsh holiday season in the prior quarter, with no blockbuster toys, weak sales and ruthless competition from discount stores and online retailers such as Amazon.com. It announced plans to streamline its operations and stabilize its results.

Still, the Wayne, New Jersey-based company recorded a loss of $196 million for the three months that ended on May 3, from a loss of $111 million last year.

Revenue rose 3 percent, to $2.48 billion from $2.41 billion. Revenue in stores open at least one year, a key retail metric, rose 4 percent in the U.S. and 1 percent internationally.