Ascena Rises After Fourth-Quarter Results Top Estimates

Ascena Retail Group Inc. rose the most in almost two years after fourth-quarter profit and revenue topped analysts’ estimates, helped by higher sales at the Maurices young-adult clothing chain.

Profit in the quarter ended July 25 was 6 cents a share, excluding some items, the Mahwah, New Jersey-based company said Wednesday in a statement. Analysts estimated 5 cents. While sales fell 1.1 percent to $1.17 billion, that still topped analysts’ $1.16 billion average projection.

Net sales at Maurices, which targets women ages 20 to 35, rose 12 percent to $254 million.

The shares climbed 12 percent to $13.38 at the close in New York for the biggest one-day gain since September 2013. Ascena has risen 6.5 percent this year.

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