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CompUSA Warns Of Lower Sales

CompUSA shares lost a quarter of their value Friday morning after the computer retailer warned declining sales will leave earnings significantly below what analysts expected.

CompUSA (CPU), one of the leading sellers of personal computers and products in the United States, said it expects third-quarter earnings to be nil vs. an expectation that it would profit 21 cents a share.

The flat results wouldn't include a 5-cent-a-share charge for "the impact of" information technology and Internet business plans, the company said in a short press release.

CompUSA could also post a loss in its fourth quarter, the company said. The First Call consensus was for earnings of 11 cents a share in that quarter.

Same-store sales for the third quarter will probably drop from year-ago levels in the "high single digit," the company said. Gross margins will probably be 13 percent to 13.2 percent, CompUSA reported.

The news could have bad implications for computer-makers. Analysts have recently questioned whether a slowdown is hitting the industry.

Shares fell 2 to 6 1/8 in trading Friday morning. The stock fell 1 7/16 to 8 1/8 on Thursday, ahead of the news.

Written By Tiare Rath, CBS MarketWatch