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Walgreens Monthly Trend From June 2012 Through October 2012 Of Comparable Prescriptions Filled, Adjusted For Day Fall And Flu Impacts. (Graphic: Business Wire)

Walgreens (NYSE: WAG) (Nasdaq: WAG) had October sales of $6.00 billion, a decrease of 2.1 percent from $6.13 billion for the same month in fiscal 2012. Results include the impact of Hurricane Sandy through Oct. 31.

Total front-end sales decreased 1.5 percent compared with the same month in fiscal 2012, while comparable store front-end sales decreased 2.9 percent through Oct. 31. Customer traffic in comparable stores decreased 5.2 percent while basket size increased 2.3 percent.

Chief Financial Officer and President, International Wade Miquelon said, “Our strategic decision not to pursue unprofitable promotions resulted in solid margins for the month as we continue to focus on gross profit dollar growth.”

Prescriptions filled at comparable stores decreased by 1.8 percent in October and by a day-fall adjusted (DFA) 5.4 percent. This year’s October had one additional Tuesday and Wednesday and one fewer Saturday and Sunday compared with October 2011, positively impacting prescriptions filled in comparable stores by 3.6 percentage points. DFA prescriptions filled at comparable stores also were positively impacted by 0.2 percentage point due to the higher incidence of flu in this year’s October. These results also include the storm impact.

At the peak of the storm, approximately 750 of 1,400 stores in the impacted area were closed. Nearly all of those locations have since reopened.

For the period from Oct. 1 through Oct. 25, which excludes the impact from Hurricane Sandy, comparable store front-end sales decreased 2.4 percent, while prescriptions filled at comparable stores decreased 4.6 percent, adjusted for calendar shifts.

Click here for a graph showing the trend of comparable prescriptions filled adjusted for day fall and flu impacts.

For the month through Oct. 31, pharmacy sales decreased 2.6 percent, while comparable store pharmacy sales decreased 7.5 percent. Calendar day shifts positively impacted pharmacy sales in comparable stores by 3.6 percentage points. DFA comparable store pharmacy sales were negatively impacted by 9.0 percentage points due to generic drug introductions in the last 12 months. Pharmacy sales accounted for 64.8 percent of total sales for the month.

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