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Buckingham Upgrades Children's Place to 'Accumulate'

Buckingham Research upgraded Children's Place (PLCE) to accumulate from neutral.

Analyst John Zolidis says August same-store sales trends have improved after a lackluster beginning, and he sees comparisions in the positive single-digit range. He says comparisons are getting easier; given improvements to the product, he sees double-digit growth during the remainder of the back-to-school season, and in the holiday season.

Zolidis notes about 26% of Children's Place float sold short. He says the general environment for retailers is improving, which makes his estimates more achievable. He sees 29 cents third-quarter earnings per share, and 60 cents in fiscal 2004 earnings per share (Jan.). He also sees 84 cents in fiscal 2005 earnings per share. Zolidis has a $22 target.

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