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Target Quarterly Profit Falls

Minneapolis Target announced Tuesday that its fourth-quarter profits fell, but that results were somewhat better than Wall Street had expected.

Earnings fell 8% to $1.03 billion, from $1.12 billion last year. Revenue edged up nearly 1% to $19.87 billion, from $19.71 billion last year.

According to the company, results were helped by new-store expansion and revenue from credit card operations. Same-store sales edged up 0.2%.

“Our financial performance in 2007 fell short of our expectations as the pace of sales and earnings slowed considerably in the second half of the year,” said Bob Ulrich, chairman and CEO. “As we enter 2008, we remain keenly focused on the disciplined execution of our core strategy, positioning Target to deliver improved financial results, even in the face of continued challenges in the current economic environment.”

For the full year, Target earned $2.85 billion, up from a 2006 profit of $2.79 billion. Revenue rose 6.5% to $63.37 billion, from $59.49 billion a year ago.

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