(Adds sales, estimates, stock activity)
LOS ANGELES Starbucks Corp (SBUX.O) said it would close more U.S. stores than it would open next fiscal year, sending shares up nearly 5 percent even as it posted its first quarterly net loss since it went public in 1992.
The coffee chain said it now expects to have a net decrease of 60 stores in the United States, good news for investors who feel that the company has too many stores.
Starbucks reported a fiscal third-quarter net loss of $6.7 million, or 1 cent per share, compared with a year-earlier net profit of $158.3 million, or 21 cents per share.
Results from the most recent quarter included 17 cents in charges primarily related to store closures and restructuring.
Excluding the charges related to closing U.S. stores, Starbucks had a per-share profit of 16 cents, lagging the 18 cents average Wall Street target, according to Reuters Estimates.
Total revenue rose 9 percent to $2.6 billion from $2.4 billion.
Starbucks shares rose to $15.36 from their Nasdaq close of $14.67. Over the last year, Starbucks shares have lost more than 45 percent of their value.
(Reporting by Lisa Baertlein; Editing by Gary Hill)
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