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Pier 1 Imports' chief financial officer has resigned Wednesday and the Fort Worth, Texas-based home furnishings retailer reported a 19.5 percent decline in sales and a loss in its fourth quarter when it historically has posted a profit.

Interim chief executive officer Cheryl Bachelder said Pier 1 will close 45 stores and may close up to 15 percent of its 970 stores in the U.S. and Canada if the company's cost structure doesn't improve. It has a plan to cut up to $110 million in costs this year.

"The home furnishings retail sector is a healthy category right now," Bachelder said during a conference call with analysts. "It's our job to get the customer to spend her share of wallet at Pier 1."

Chief financial officer Nancy Walsh has left the company after only 15 months. The company said her departure was not related to a disagreement over financial disclosures or accounting policies. But it was apparently abrupt and effective Wednesday.

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Deborah Rieger-Paganis from consulting firm AlixPartners has been appointed interim CFO. Darla D. Ramirez, who has served as interim CFO in the past, will be interim principal financial officer.

The company is working to regain compliance to retain its listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

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