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Publix 3Q sales up on inflation, economy

Publix Super Markets on Monday said that earnings increased 7.3% in the third quarter on a 6.3% increase in sales.

The Lakeland, Fla.-based retailer said sales for the period, which ended Sept. 26, totaled $7.8 billion. Comparable-store sales increased by 4.2%, mainly due to product cost inflation and increased customer counts resulting from a better economic climate, the company said.

Net earnings for the third quarter were $412.3 million, compared with $384.2 million in 2014. Gross profits as a percent of sales was unchanged from the third quarter last year but up slightly for the nine-month period, reflecting decreased administrative costs as a percentage of sales.

Publix stock, which is available only to company employees and directors, decreased to $41.80 a share from $42, reflecting change in the stock market, the company said.

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