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April sales dip at Rite Aid

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CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid Corp. reported a dip in same-store sales for April after seeing improved results in the previous month.

The drug store chain said Thursday that same-store sales for the four weeks ended April 24 fell 1% from a year earlier. The company had posted flat same-store results in March after reporting declines of 3.2% in February, 2.1% in January and 1.8% in December.

In April, same-stores sales decreased 1.2% in the front end, compared with a 1.8% gain in March. Rite Aid noted that April and March front-end sales were impacted by an earlier Easter this year (April 4 versus April 12 last year).

For the combined March and April seasonal selling period, same-store sales in the front end increased by 0.3%.

Pharmacy same-store revenue was down 0.9% for April, a bit less than in the previous month. April same-store results in the pharmacy included a 103-basis-point negative impact from new generic drug introductions, and prescriptions filled at comparable stores fell 1.8% compared with a year earlier, according to Rite Aid.

Total drug store sales, meanwhile, declined 2% to $1.962 billion in April, compared with $2.003 billion a year ago.

For the eight-week year-to-date period ended April 24, same-store sales decreased 0.6%, reflecting a 0.3% gain in the front end and a 1% decrease in the pharmacy. Prescriptions filled at comparable stores dropped 1.6% over the prior-year period.

Total drug store sales for the year to date were down 1.7% to $3.93 billion from $4 billion in the year-ago span.

As of April 24, Rite Aid operated 4,773 stores, compared with 4,846 stores a year ago.


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