SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Penn Traffic Co. here reported a net loss on lower sales for the third quarter, citing a reduction in store count. The loss for the period, which ended Nov. 1, was $5.6 million, or 67 cents per share, compared with a loss of $9.6 million a year ago, reflecting non-recurring charges of $5.6 million for closed-store costs, legal costs, severance, asset sales and reorganization costs.
Sales for the quarter fell 3.8% to $287.3 million, which the company said reflected a reduction in corporate-owned stores to 93 from 104. For the 39-week period, the loss was $21.4 million, or $2.55 per share, compared with a loss of $21.9 million, reflecting non-recurring charges of $16 million. Sales fell 3.7% to $881.2 million.
In Penn Traffic’s retail food segment, which represents about 80% of sales, revenues from continuing operations fell 7.6% to $225.9 million for the quarter and 6.5% to $702.5 million for the nine-month period, while comparable-store sales fell 0.8% for the quarter and 1.3% for the year to date.
Sales in the wholesale food distribution segment rose 13% to $59.3 million for the quarter and 10.2% to $172.6 million for the 39 weeks. The company said the gains were due in part to the sale of three corporate-owned stores to independent owners served by the wholesale segment, as well as the addition of three new customers.
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