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THE WET SEAL INC. REPORTS SECOND QUARTER RESULTS

 IRVINE, Calif., Aug. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Women's apparel retailer The Wet Seal Inc. (NASDAQ: WTSLA) announced a loss of $373,000 (-$.03 per share) for the 13-week period ended July 31, 1993, compared to earnings of $1,446,000 ($.12 per share) during the second quarter of 1992.
 For the 26-week period ended July 31, 1993, the company posted a loss of $302,000 (-$.02 per share), as compared to earnings of $2,300,000 ($.19 per share) in the comparable period last year.
 Sales during the second quarter of fiscal 1993 totaled $35,659,000, down from sales of $38,667,000 during the same period the previous year. For the 26-week period ended July 31, 1993, sales were $68,732,000, as compared to sales of $72,648,000 for the same period last year.
 "Projected sales did not materialize, due, in part, to continued weak economic conditions in some key markets and soft demand for junior apparel," said Kathy Bronstein, president and chief executive officer.
 Comparable store sales, excluding remodeled stores, were down 17.1 percent for the second quarter. For the 26 weeks ended July 31, 1993, comparable store sales decreased 15.7 percent.
 Bronstein said that management has been diligent in holding down operational expenses, and she added that Wet Seal continues to have a strong cash position and no long-term debt.
 With 77 of its 127 stores situated throughout California, Wet Seal is looking outside that state for its current and future expansion. Six new stores have opened since the beginning of the current fiscal year, including Wet Seal's first in Atlanta. First locations in New York and Louisiana, in addition to a second store in Atlanta, will open in time for holiday selling. By fiscal year end, Wet Seal will have opened 10 new stores and closed four.
 The Wet Seal Inc., headquartered in Irvine, is a specialty retailer of moderately priced fashionable apparel for women. Stores currently are located in California, Arizona, Nevada, Hawaii, Florida, Texas, Washington and Georgia.
 THE WET SEAL INC.
 Selected Financial Data
 (Unaudited)
 13 Weeks Ended 26 Weeks Ended
 July 31, Aug. 1, July 31, Aug. 1,
 1993 1992 1993 1992
 Statements of Income
 Sales $35,659,000 $38,667,000 $68,732,000 $72,648,000
 Cost of sales
 (including
 buying,
 distribution and
 occupancy costs) 28,785,000 28,423,000 54,655,000 53,915,000
 Gross margin 6,874,000 10,244,000 14,077,000 18,733,000
 Selling, general
 and
 administrative 7,620,000 8,004,000 14,847,000 15,213,000
 Interest income,
 net (127,000) (177,000) (273,000) (324,000)
 Net operating
 expenses 7,493,000 7,827,000 14,574,000 14,889,000
 Income before
 prov. for income
 taxes (619,000) 2,417,000 (497,000) 3,844,000
 Provision for
 income taxes (246,000) 971,000 (195,000) 1,544,000
 Net income ($373,000) $1,446,000 ($302,000) $2,300,000
 Net income per
 common share ($0.03) $0.12 ($0.02) $0.19
 Weighted avg. number
 of shares O/S 12,227,763 12,221,152 12,227,763 12,221,152
 Selected Operating Data:
 Stores opened
 at end of period --- --- 127 117
 Average sales per
 square foot $69 $86 $133 $165
 Average sales per
 store 280,000 336,000 542,000 638,000
 Comparable store
 sales decrease
 excluding
 remodeled stores -17.1 pct 8.0 pct -15.7 pct 9.2 pct
 Balance Sheet Data:
 Working capital $18,122,000 $15,305,000
 Inventory 12,635,000 15,201,000
 Total assets 73,439,000 77,436,000
 Long-term debt --- ---
 Total stockholders' equity $53,783,000 $52,770,000
 -0- 8/19/93
 /CONTACT: Ed Thomas, executive VP, or E. Lesly Martin, Marketing, of The Wet Seal, 714-583-9029/
 (WTSLA)


CO: The Wet Seal Inc. ST: California IN: REA SU: ERN

MF-BP -- LA030 -- 4544 08/19/93 18:30 EDT
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Date:Aug 19, 1993
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