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Rite Aid posts monthly same-store sales decline

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CAMP HILL, Pa. — Same-store sales fell again at Rite Aid Corp. in February, with the drug chain pointing to a weak cough, cold and flu season as well as bad weather and anemic consumer demand.

For the five weeks ended Feb. 27, same-store sales dropped 3.2% over the prior-year period, Rite Aid said Thursday. That result was down from a 2.1% decline in January and extended the retailer’s string of same-store sales decreases, with the last reported gain occurring in May.

Both pharmacy and front-end same-store sales fell 3.2%, according to Rite Aid. The company noted that the pharmacy results reflect a 206 basis-point negative impact from new generic drug introductions. Prescriptions filled at comparable stores decreased 3.4% over the year-ago time span.

Total drug store sales for the five-week period, meanwhile, were down 4.5% to $2.43 billion from $2.55 billion a year earlier.

For the 13-week third quarter ended Feb. 27, same-store sales decreased 2.4%, including declines of 2.6% in the front end and 2.4% in the pharmacy, Rite Aid reported. Overall drug store sales for the 13-week third quarter fell 3.7% to $6.44 billion.

And for the 52-week period ended Feb. 27, comparable-store revenue dipped 0.9%, reflecting a 2.9% decrease in the front of the store and a 0.1% increase in the pharmacy. Total drug store sales for period were down 2.4% to $25.57 billion.

Rite Aid said that as of Feb. 27, it operated 4,780 stores, compared with 4,901 stores a year ago.


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