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L Brands key sales metric up 2 percent in June

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- L Brands Inc., the owner of Victoria's Secret and Bath & Body Works, said Thursday that sales at stores open at least a year rose 2 percent in June from the same month a year ago.

That was below the 3.1 percent rise Wall Street analysts expected, according to Thomson Reuters.

Its shares fell more than 5 percent in premarket trading.

Sales at stores open at least a year is a closely-watched indicator of a retailer's health. It excludes the potentially distorting effect of sales at stores recently opened or closed.

The Columbus, Ohio, company said total sales in the five weeks that ended July 5 rose 6.8 percent to $1.176 billion, compared with $1.101 billion in the same period a year ago.

L Brands operates 2,936 stores around the world, including lingerie retailer La Senza and high-end specialty store Henri Bendel.

Its shares dropped $3.38, or 5.5 percent, to $58.48 in premarket trading about an hour before the market opening.

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