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Zumiez March sales figure is up, but shares fall

EVERETT, Wash. (AP) -- Retailer Zumiez Inc. said Wednesday that a key sales comparison improved for March.

Zumiez, which sells skate and surf-inspired clothing and gear for teenagers, said its sales at stores open at least a year rose 14.1 percent.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected growth of 8.9 percent. The comparison is are considered an important measure of a retailer's health because it excludes stores that have opened or closed in the last year.

The chain's total sales for the five-week period that ended on Saturday rose 23.5 percent to $50.9 million from a year earlier.

Shares of Zumiez fell 65 cents Wednesday to close at $36.95. They lost another $1.39, or 3.8 percent, after hours, falling to $35.56. The company reported on its March sales after the markets closed.