MEMPHIS, Tenn. (
said fiscal third-quarter earnings rose 16.7% as sales increased 9.9% to $1.82 billion.
AutoZone, the auto parts retailer, said third-quarter earnings were $202.7 million, or $4.12 a share. Analysts expected earnings of $3.59 a share on revenue of $1.71 billion.
AutoZone said domestic same-store sales increased 7.1% in the quarter.
Gross profit, as a percentage of sales, was 50.7% vs. 50.2% a year earlier. The company said the improvement in gross margin came from higher merchandise margins and leveraging distribution costs due to higher sales.
AutoZone said it opened 21 new stores in the U.S. in the quarter and 10 in Mexico.
-- Reported by Joseph Woelfel in New York.
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