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Walgreen Profit Tops Estimates

The company says first-quarter sales rose more than 10% from a year ago.
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Drugstore operator



said fiscal first-quarter sales rose 10.2% from a year ago, while same-store sales climbed 7.2%.

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The Deerfield, Ill., company earned $345.6 million, or 34 cents a share, compared with $328.6 million and 32 cents a share a year ago. The latest quarter's earnings were reduced by 2 cents a share for employee stock option expenses. Last year's quarter includes a gain of 1 cent a share from litigation settlements.

Sales totaled $10.9 billion, up from $9.89 billion in the year-ago period. Prescription sales, which accounted for 65% of sales in the quarter, increased 10.3%.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call were looking for a profit of 33 cents and a top line of $11 billion in the quarter.

Shares of Walgreen rose 73 cents to $44.99 in premarket trading Tuesday.