Safeway Takes $1.8 Billion Charge

A massive goodwill write-off in its Vons and Eastern divisions triggered a $1.6 billion loss in the fourth quarter for Safeway, the retailer here said Thursday.

PLEASANTON, Calif. — A massive goodwill write-off in its Vons and Eastern divisions triggered a $1.6 billion loss in the fourth quarter for Safeway, the retailer here said Thursday.

The $1.8 billion charge was necessitated by a sharp decline in year-over-year share prices, Safeway officials said. Excluding the charge, Safeway posted net income of $209.1 million for the quarter that ended Jan. 2, down from $338 m

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