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Williams-Sonoma Rises After Sales Forecast Tops Estimates

Williams-Sonoma Inc., the San Francisco-based seller of cookware and home furnishings, jumped the most in almost a year after its sales forecast topped analysts’ estimates.

The company expects same-store sales growth of 5 percent to 7 percent this year, according to a statement yesterday, compared with the 3.7 percent estimated by analysts on average. Revenue will reach $4.63 billion to $4.71 billion, Williams-Sonoma predicted. Analysts had projected a number at the low end of that range, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Williams-Sonoma has benefited from a U.S. housing recovery, which has motivated shoppers to refresh their homes. Chief Executive Officer Laura Alber’s drive to add exclusive merchandise to fend off online competition also has paid off, fueling a fourth-quarter sales turnaround at the retailer’s namesake kitchenware chain. The company saw growth at its Pottery Barn and West Elm chains as well.

“Williams-Sonoma Inc. outperformed the retail industry this holiday season, gaining market share and demonstrating the structural advantage of our multibrand, multichannel platform,” Alber said in the statement.

The shares climbed 9.8 percent to $64.74 at the close in New York, the biggest one-day gain since March 20, 2013. The stock has advanced 11 percent this year, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index has dropped 0.1 percent.

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