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Coldwater Creek reports sales drop

Coldwater Creek on Tuesday announced a sharp drop in sales and likely quarterly and annual losses in advance of its March 4 reporting date.

The Sandpoint-based retailer of women’s apparel said the expected fourth-quarter, per-share loss of 23 cents to 25 cents, compares with a loss of 19 cents for the 2007 period. Revenues are forecast at $280 million.

For its fiscal year, the per-share loss will range between 31 cents and 33 cents, compared with 3 cents a year ago. Revenues will total about $1 billion.

A company statement noted cost-cutting efforts have reduced expenses by $60 million, with the goal of trimming another $30 million in 2009. Store openings will be cut to no more than 10, down from 43 in 2008.


S-R employees’ pay to be cut

Spokesman-Review employees’ pay will be cut by 5 percent in response to steep declines in advertising revenue, the company’s president and publisher announced Monday.

In addition, all 2009 raises are canceled, Stacey Cowles told employees, citing 30 percent reductions in ad revenue in December and January compared with year-ago levels.

The pay cuts are effective March 1 for managers and non-union employees making more than $11 an hour. Cowles requested that union employees making more than $11 an hour also voluntarily adopt the pay rollbacks. Unions were asked to provide their responses to the request by Feb. 23.


Company unveils Madoff effigy

Want to relieve anger over a destroyed portfolio? Try beating Bernard Madoff to smithereens for the humble price of $99.95.

A toy company launched “Smash-Me Bernie” at the industry-only Toy Fair this week in New York. The pitchfork-wielding doll was created in Madoff’s likeness, complete with a red devil suit. A hammer is included, so you can smash Madoff, who was arrested in December after confessing to a $50 billion Ponzi scheme, indefinitely.

ModelWorks, the Phoenix-based company behind the mini-Madoff, also offers figures that can be customized to look like whomever a buyer chooses. So if Madoff didn’t do you wrong but your boss did, consider sending a photo of him or her with your order at

Bert Caldwell From staff reports Chicago Tribune

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