Lifted by gains in the front end and the pharmacy, Rite Aid Corp. continued its same-store sales resurgence in May.


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Rite Aid keeps same-store sales on upside in May

June 2nd, 2011

CAMP HILL, Pa. – Lifted by gains in the front end and the pharmacy, Rite Aid Corp. continued its same-store sales resurgence in May.

The drug store chain said Thursday that for the five weeks ended May 28, comparable-store sales rose 1.3%, a bigger year-over-year gain than the 0.5% same-store uptick recorded in April.

Except for virtually flat results in March, Rite Aid has seen same-store sales increases every month starting in December, before which time the company hadn't reported a monthly gain since May 2009.

For the five weeks ended May 28, same-store sales were up 1.8% in the front end and 1% in the pharmacy. Rite Aid noted that pharmacy comp-store results reflect a 129-basis-point negative impact from generic drug introductions. Prescription count at comparable stores inched up 0.1% over the prior-year period.

Overall drug store sales for the five-week period climbed 1% to $2.46 billion from $2.44 billion in the prior-year period.

Meanwhile, same-store sales for the 13-week first quarter ended May 28 edged up 0.8% versus a year ago, including flat results in the front end and a 1.1% rise in the pharmacy. Rite Aid said the prescription count at comparable stores gained 0.4%. Total drug store sales in the quarter were flat at nearly $6.37 billion.

The retailer said that as of May 28, it operated 4,704 drug stores, compared with 4,767 stores a year earlier.

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