Penney reports loss and plummeting sales in 1Q

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By ANNE D'INNOCENZIO, Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — J.C. Penney is reporting a bigger-than-expected loss and plummeting profits in the first quarter as many of its customers are rejecting a new bold pricing strategy that puts an end to rampant discounting in favor of everyday low prices.

The department store chain says it lost $163 million, or 75 cents per share in the quarter ended April 28. That compares with a profit of $64 million, or 28 cents per share in the year-ago period. Revenue dropped 20 percent to $3.15 billion for the quarter.

Analysts had expected a penny loss on revenue of $3.45 billion.

Revenue at stores opened at least a year dropped 18.9 percent.

Separately, the company says it will be discontinuing its quarterly dividend of 20 cents per share.

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