MONTVALE, N.J. — A&P here saw its stock fall by more than 25% Friday after reporting quarterly earnings and margin performance that fell short of market expectations despite strong sales figures. The retailer reported net income of $2.2 million — and a loss from continuing operations of 48 cents per share — on sales of $2.9 billion for the 16-week first quarter ended June 14. Comparable-store sales at A&P improved by 3.2%, and comps at Pathmark, which A&P acquired in December, improved by 3.1% — its best performance since 2001, officials said. Analysts had expected a loss of 41 cents and higher EBITDA than the $96 million A&P posted for the quarter. Officials said some of the shortfall related to a loss $5 million it attributed to errors in transitioning merchandising functions from Pathmark to A&P. Stock Friday closed at a 52-week low of $17.70, down by 25.7% from its opening at $23.85.
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