Buckle key sales figure falls 6.6 percent in Jan.

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The Buckle Inc. said Thursday that sales at stores open at least a year fell 6.6 percent in January, a larger drop than Wall Street analysts had expected.

Analysts expected the teen retailer's figure to fall 1.2 percent, according to Thomson Reuters.

Sales at stores open at least a year is considered a closely-watched indicator of a retailer's financial health. It strips away the impact of recently opened or closed stores.

Total sales in January dropped 27.9 percent to $56.9 million from $78.8 million in the same month the year before. The company said that last month's total sales were compared to January 2013, which, at five weeks, was a week longer than January 2014. Buckle said its same store sales figure was compared using the same four week period.

The company, which is based in Kearney, Neb., operates 449 stores around the country.

Its shares slipped 5 cents to $42.71 in morning trading Thursday.

Its shares have fallen more than 7 percent since a year ago.

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