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UBS Downgrades Pier 1 to Reduce from Neutral

UBS Financial downgraded Pier 1 Imports (PIR) to reduce from neutral, explaining that there are no signs of fundamental business improvement.

Analyst Brian Nagel believes that a challenging macroeconomic and competitive environment will weigh on Pier 1 for the next several quarters. He thinks November sales numbers due out Thursday will fall below market estimates and believes structural shifts in the company's home fashion market will continue to impede the company's turnaround efforts, limiting potential for significant upside in the foreseeable future. He cut his 15 cents third quarter earnings per share estimate to 5 cents, his 27 cents fourth quarter earnings per share estimate to 22 cents, and his 16 cents fiscal year 2006 (ending February) earnings per share estimate to breakeven.

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