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Spiegel Group Reports June Sales

From: ASAP
Remote Name: 216.57.26.250

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The Spiegel Group today reported sales of $246.3 million for the five weeks ended June 30, 2001, an 8 percent decrease from sales of $267.1 million for the five weeks ended July 1, 2001.

For the twenty-six weeks ended June 30, 2001, total sales declined 4 percent to $1.286 billion from $1.339 billion in the same period last year.

The company also reported that comparable-store sales for its Eddie Bauer division decreased 11 percent for the five-week period and 10 percent for the 26-week period ended June 30, 2001.

Sales results by division for the month of June were as follows: sales declined 6 percent at Eddie Bauer, 15 percent at Newport News and 7 percent at Spiegel.

Sales results by channel for the month were as follows: retail store sales declined 5 percent and direct sales fell 10 percent. Direct sales reflect a 46 percent increase in e-commerce sales and an 18 percent decrease in catalog sales.

Second quarter earnings expectations

The Spiegel Group will report second quarter earnings on July 24, 2001. The company previously issued guidance for the second quarter that called for modest revenue growth and earnings of $0.02 to $0.05 per share. The company stated that while revenue will be lower than its prior projection, earnings are expected to be within the range of previously issued guidance and include higher securitization income compared to last year's second quarter.

Sale of asset-backed securities

Commenting on its sale of asset-backed securities, the company stated that it recently priced a $600 million public offer of asset-backed securities. The transaction is expected to close on July 19, 2001. The proceeds of this offer will be used primarily to replace previously issued asset-backed securities. Consequently, net securitization income will not be materially affected by this transaction.

This press release contains statements that are forward-looking within the meaning of applicable federal securities laws and are based upon Spiegel, Inc.'s current expectations and assumptions. Words such as "expect," "plan," "believe," "anticipate," and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. Any such forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated. Potential risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, factors such as the financial strength and performance of the retail and direct marketing industry, changes in consumer spending patterns, dependence on the securitization of accounts receivable to fund operations, state and federal laws and regulations related to offering and extending credit, risks associated with collections on the company's credit card portfolio, interest rate fluctuations, postal rate increases, paper and printing costs, the success of planned merchandising, advertising, marketing and promotional campaigns, and other factors that may be described in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Spiegel Group is a leading international specialty retailer marketing fashionable apparel and home furnishings to customers through catalogs, more than 580 specialty retail and outlet stores and eight e-commerce sites, including eddiebauer.com, newport-news.com and spiegel.com. The Spiegel Group's businesses include Eddie Bauer, Newport News, Spiegel and First Consumers National Bank. The company's Class A Non-Voting Common Stock trades on the NASDAQ National Market System under the ticker symbol: SPGLA. Investor relations information is available on The Spiegel Group Web site (thespiegelgroup.com).

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