BOISE, Idaho -- Albertson's here said retail square footage grew to 41.5 million square feet in the third quarter ended Oct. 30, a net increase of 6.4% compared with the year-ago quarter.
in the fourth quarter of 1997 for a total of about 68 store openings for the year. Included in the 68 stores are three acquired stores in Texas that opened Nov. 12. Albertson's completed seven remodels during the third quarter for a total of 22 remodels completed during the 39-week period. Plans call for the completion of approximately 12 additional remodels this year for a total of about 34 remodels for 1997. One store was closed during the quarter for a total of four closures year to date, Albertson's said.
Sales in the quarter were $3.6 billion, an increase of 7% over the $3.4 billion for the similar 13-week period last year.
Identical-store sales increased 1.1% and comparable-store sales (which include replacement stores) increased 1.2%.
Net earnings were $123.4 million, compared with $106.4 million last year, an increase of 16%. Earnings per share for the third quarter increased 19% to 50 cents per share compared with 42 cents per share last year.
Sales for the 39 weeks were $10.9 billion, an increase of 6.9% over the $10.2 billion for the similar 39-week period last year.