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EARNINGS

Price Co. Reports Sharp Increase in Profits, Revenue

October 14, 1987|CHRIS KRAUL

The Price Co., operator of 35 Price Club discount warehouses, reported significant increases in profits and revenue for the fourth quarter and full year ended Aug. 30.

Price reported net income of $19.1 million, a 20% increase from the $16 million over the same period last year. Revenue increased to $786.5 million, up 23% from the $638.7 million last year.

Full year net income of $73.3 million was 24.5% higher than the $58.9 million reported for fiscal 1986. Revenue grew to $3.24 billion, up 25% from the $2.6 billion in 1986.

Reflecting increased softness in retailing in general in recent months, the rate of sales growth at Price Clubs that were operating during the same period last year declined for the second straight quarter. Same-store sales growth in the fourth quarter was 5.4%, down from 11.1% growth in the third quarter, 18.7% in the second quarter and 15% in the first quarter.

Comparable sales at Price Clubs over the full year grew 12.4%, the company said.

Retail analyst Sarah Stack, with Bateman Eichler, Hill Richards of Los Angeles, said Price Co. continues to outperform the competition in the discount warehouse business. "Twelve percent comparable store growth is above average. (Price Co.'s earnings growth) continues to validate its concept and execution," Stack said.

The company also said it will open new Price Clubs in San Juan Capistrano, East Baltimore, Md., and Edison, N.J., in coming months.

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