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CVS profit rises 18% in Q2, raises outlook

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Woonsocket, R.I. — CVS Caremark Corp. reported Tuesday that profit for the quarter ended June 30 leaped 18.4% to a record $966 million from $816 million last year, boosted by the contractual impasse between rival Walgreens and Express Scripts.

Revenue for the quarter climbed 16.3% to $30.7 billion from $26.4 billion, missing Wall Street’s estimated $31.02 billion in revenue. Front-end same-store sales increased 2.3% for the quarter.

CVS has raised its forecast for the full year based on the strength of its performance. “With our stable business and differentiated offerings, we remain very well positioned in the marketplace," said Larry Merlo, president and CEO.

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Office Depot loss widens in Q2

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Boca Raton, Fla. — Office Depot reported Tuesday that it lost $64.3 million in the second quarter, widened from a $29.3 million loss in the same period last year.

Weakened sales in North America and Europe, along with a $23.9 million impairment charge and other restructuring charges, contributed to the weakened performance.

Revenue dropped 7% to $2.51 billion, compared with $2.71 in the year-ago period and missing analysts’ expected $2.6 billion in revenue. Sales in North America fell 8%, and same-store sales dropped 4%.

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Survey: Most parents spend up to $500/child on back-to-school

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Austin, Texas — A survey released Tuesday by coupon site RetailMeNot.com found that nearly 80% of parents spend up to $500 per child for back-to-school shopping.

Additionally, the survey – which was conducted with Ipsos Public Affairs – found that the majority of parents get the jump on the school year by starting their shopping in July and August (54%) versus after the school year begins.

A significant number of parents, 29%, find the back-to-school shopping experience to be either annoying or stressful.

Among the other key findings:

  • A significant majority of parents (83%) use coupons when they shop;
  • Nearly a quarter of parents (22%) start their back-to-school shopping in July, though 32% wait until August;
  • Clothing tends to account for the bulk of parents’ back-to-school budgets, with 35% saying they plan to spend the majority of their budgets on clothes;
  • Nearly a third of parents (34%) say that school supplies will account for at least 30% of spending; and
    One in seven (15%) report that at least 30% of their budget will be put toward shoes.

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