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Press release from Business Wire

The Wet Seal, Inc. Announces July Comparable Store Sales Declined 4.3%; Affirms Second Quarter EPS Estimate at the Low End of Initial Guidance Range

Thursday, August 05, 2010

The Wet Seal, Inc. Announces July Comparable Store Sales Declined 4.3%; Affirms Second Quarter EPS Estimate at the Low End of Initial Guidance Range07:00 EDT Thursday, August 05, 2010 FOOTHILL RANCH, Calif. (Business Wire) -- The Wet Seal, Inc. (Nasdaq: WTSLA), a leading specialty retailer to young women, reported net sales and comparable store sales for the four-week period ended July 31, 2010, or fiscal July, as follows:   Fiscal July       Comparable Store Sales Net Sales % Change   % Change   $ in Millions   From Last Year This Year   Last Year Wet Seal $ 34.6 -2.8 % -4.7 % -12.3 % Arden B   6.5   -9.1 % -1.9 %   -11.2 % Total $ 41.1   -3.9 % -4.3 %   -12.1 %     Fiscal Second Quarter       Comparable Store Sales Net Sales % Change   % Change   $ in Millions   From Last Year This Year   Last Year Wet Seal $ 108.9 -2.4 % -4.3 % -11.9 % Arden B   22.6   -8.8 % -4.5 %   -4.1 % Total $ 131.5   -3.5 % -4.3 %   -10.6 %   Ed Thomas, chief executive officer of The Wet Seal, Inc., commented: "While we are pleased with our current merchandise assortment at both divisions and believe that our mix is well aligned with our customer preferences, weak traffic trends and a highly promotional environment continue to pressure sales. That said, we are controlling inventory levels and expect inventory per square foot to be flat at the end of the second quarter." The Company now estimates fiscal second quarter earnings per diluted share will be $0.02. These expected results are at the low end of the Company's initial guidance range. The Company is in the process of evaluating certain of its store assets for evidence of impairment. The guidance does not include any estimate for potential non-cash long-lived asset impairment charges, which could result in a decrease to earnings. About Wet Seal Headquartered in Foothill Ranch, California, The Wet Seal, Inc. is a leading specialty retailer of fashionable and contemporary apparel and accessory items. As of July 31, 2010, the Company operated a total of 508 stores in 47 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, including 432 Wet Seal stores and 76 Arden B stores. The Company's products can also be purchased online at www.wetseal.com or www.ardenb.com. For more company information, visit www.wetsealinc.com. SAFE HARBOR STATEMENT UNDER THE PRIVATE SECURITIES LITIGATION REFORM ACT OF 1995: This news release contains forward-looking statements as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements that relate to earnings per share and inventory per square foot expectations for the Company's fiscal second quarter and the quality of the Company's inventory assortment, or any other statements that relate to the intent, belief, plans or expectations of the Company or its management. All forward-looking statements made by the Company involve material risks and uncertainties and are subject to change based on factors beyond the Company's control. Accordingly, the Company's future performance and financial results may differ materially from those expressed or implied in any such forward-looking statements. Such factors include, but are not limited to, those described in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. This news release contains results reflecting partial year data and non-fiscal data that may not be indicative of results for similar future periods or for the full year. The Company will not undertake to publicly update or revise its forward-looking statements even if experience or future changes make it clear that any projected results expressed or implied therein will not be realized.