ECONOMY, COMPETITION KEEP SPARTAN IN THE RED

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- Spartan Stores here last week posted a loss of $57.1 million for the third quarter ended Jan. 4 as the weak economy and price-based competition put increasing pressure on the wholesaler and retailer.The company said it saw some encouraging signs in both its retail and distribution operations during the course of the 16-week period, however. In addition, the company said it has

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- Spartan Stores here last week posted a loss of $57.1 million for the third quarter ended Jan. 4 as the weak economy and price-based competition put increasing pressure on the wholesaler and retailer.

The company said it saw some encouraging signs in both its retail and distribution operations during the course of the 16-week period, however. In addition, the company said it has exceeded its targeted debt repayments for the period, a fact that at least one analys

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