American Stores Co. Monday announced second-quarter earnings $69.0 million or 48 cents per share, up from $58.5 million or 41 cents for the same period last year.
Total sales for the quarter were $4.7 billion, down slightly from the 1993 period. Like store sales increased 0.1 percent excluding the sales of Star Market, the 33-store chain that Salt Lake City-based American Stores has agreed to divest in September.Comparable store sales, which include replacement stores and exclude Star Market, increased 0.3 percent for the quarter.
Operating profit exceeded the prior year by 10.5 percent and totaled $169.8 million, or 3.64 percent of sales. Each of the company's three principal operating groups reported higher operating profit compared to the prior year.
"We are very pleased with our second quarter results," said Victor L. Lund, president. "They reflect a sound strategy and solid execution. Perhaps the most significant aspect of our second quarter was the top line. This marks the first time in nine quarters that comparable store sales ventured into positive figures."
Lund said the company is "Winning over new, loyal customers. We simply will not `rent' customers through programs that do not provide sustainable growth."