The Camp Hill, Pa., pharmacy chain said it made $15 million, or a penny a share, for the quarter ended March 3, down from the year-ago $1.25 billion, or $1.83 a share. Year-ago earnings were boosted to the tune of $1.82 a share by a tax benefit.
Sales fell 4.4% from a year ago to $4.56 billion, with Rite Aid blaming the drop on this year's 13-week quarter as compared to a 14-week period last year. Same-store sales rose 3% from a year ago.
Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were looking for a 2-cent profit on sales of $4.63 billion.
Rite Aid said it expects to lose 11 to 23 cents a share for the year, including the acquisition of the Brooks and Eckerd chains, on sales of $25.3 billion to $26 billion. The company said it expects the acquisition to add 18 to 20 cents a share to 2009 earnings.