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Ingles Markets has solid Q2

BY Dan Berthiaume

Asheville, N.C. – Ingles Markets reported a large increase in net income and smaller increase in net sales during the second quarter of fiscal 2014 as compared to the same period in the previous fiscal year. Net income soared 29.2% to $105 million from $8.1 million, while net sales grew 2.9% to $947.8 million from $920.7 million.

Lower interest expense helped boost net income. Ingles said growth in sales was negatively affected by the Easter holiday, which benefited sales in the second quarter of the previous fiscal year but will not occur until the third quarter the current fiscal year. Same-store sales increased 2.5%.

“We are pleased with our sales and net income growth this quarter,” said Robert P. Ingle, CEO. “Our stores continue to focus on sales growth and that certainly made a difference this quarter.”

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Havertys has tough Q1; plans three new stores

BY Dan Berthiaume

Atlanta – Havertys reported declining year-over-year net income and sales during the first quarter of fiscal 2014, which the retailer attributed to a 0.9% drop in same-store sales and out-of-period gross profit adjustment in the first quarter of fiscal 2013. The company still plans to open three new stores in its largest markets.

Net income dropped 26% to $6.13 million, from $8.26 million. Net sales declined 2% to $181.7 million, from $186.1 million.

“Our store growth and repositioning is well underway as we work to open three new stores in our largest markets, including a smaller format designed for dense urban areas,” said Clarence H. Smith, chairman, president and CEO. “These combined with the three store relocations and two closures will increase our retail square footage about 1.8% by the end of 2014. We believe measured expansion and our ongoing focus on the customer and her Havertys shopping experience will provide growth in the near and long term."

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Seattle mayor unveils plan to raise minimum wage to $15

BY Marianne Wilson

New York — Seattle Mayor Ed Murray on Thursday unveiled a plan to increase the city’s minimum wage to $15. Although Murray said the hike has broad support across local government, business and labor communities, the City Council still has to vote on the proposal.

Under Murray’s plan, businesses with fewer than 500 employees would have seven years to comply and larger businesses would have three years. Further increases would be tied to inflation.

The state of Washington already has the nation’s highest state minimum wage, at $9.32 an hour.

“Throughout this process, I’ve had two goals: to get Seattle’s low-wage workers to $15-per-hour while also supporting our employers, and to avoid a costly battle at the ballot box between competing initiatives,” Murray said in a statement. “We have a deal that I believe accomplishes both goals.”

In California, lawmakers are debating a proposal to raise the minimum wage to $13 an hour by 2017.

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