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Publix sales, earnings up in 1Q

Publix Super Markets on Monday said first-quarter sales of $8.7 billion increased by 4.5% from the same period last year.

Comparable-store sales for the quarter increased by 3.3%. The Lakeland, Fla., company estimated around $100 million in sales — or 1.2% — benefited as the result of the Easter holiday during the first quarter. A year ago, the effect of the Easter holiday was in the second quarter. The company said the early holiday, product cost inflation and increased customer counts due to an improved economic climate contributed to the increase in comparable store sales.

Quarterly net earnings of $581.9 million increased by 6%. Publix operated 1,111 stores as of March 26. Effective May 1, Publix’s stock price decreased from $45.20 per share to $43.95 per share. Publix stock is not publicly traded and is made available for sale only to current Publix associates and members of its board of directors.

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