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J.C. Penney's comparable store sales fall 3.5%

J. C. Penney Co. Inc. on Jan. 8 said its comparable sales fell 3.5% on an adjusted basis during the nine-week period ended Jan. 5.

The retailer also reaffirmed its fiscal 2018 outlook to generate positive free cash flow and reduce inventory in excess of $225 million or 8%. The company expects to end fiscal 2018 with liquidity in excess of $2 billion.

The department store operator said it will close three stores this spring. The store closures are part of an evaluation of the company's store portfolio.