Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: Walgreen’s 3rd-quarter results propel stock

June 23, 2008

Check out the quarterly results at Walgreen, one of the largest U.S. drugstore operators.

The company posted a 2 percent increase in quarterly profit, amid a weak U.S. economy and slowing growth in sales of prescription drugs —  in the rewalgreen.jpgported quarter, Zyrtec was switched to over-the-counter status.

And a slower-than-usual flu season — (good for you and me) – wasn’t so good for Walgreen. The company also pointed to the milder flu period for a slowdown in prescription drug sales volume in the quarter.

The company said it is on track to beat its goal of opening 550 new drugstores this year — and perhaps even come to the rescue of cash-strapped shoppers in the process.

“We’re adding neighborhood locations for today’s customer who is searching for value and struggling with high gas prices,” President Greg Wasson said in a statement on Monday.

As of May 31, the company operated 6,727 store locations in 49 states, but will be in all 50 states when it opens its first Alaska stores in 2009.

Also in the basket:

Bunge to buy Corn Products for $4.4 billion

Costco plans Australia foray to challenge duopoly

Busch family member backs ‘strong’ Anheuser Busch

Jones Apparel takes stake in Asian partner

(Photo: Reuters)

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