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Report Sees Soft Demand in Europe

BY CSA STAFF

New York City, Intense competitive pressures in European retail are creating a race to countries with bright growth prospects, according to New York City-based Standard & Poors. Chains with an attractive price image, solid international operations outside Western Europe and a presence in the fastest-growing formats will weather soft demand and deflationary trends in Europe, according to the report, “Industry Report Card: European Retail,” published yesterday by Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services. “Given the challenging conditions prevailing in mature Western European markets, retailers are likely to allocate a generous slice of capital investment to emerging markets,” said Nicolas Baudouin, credit analyst of Standard & Poor.

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Albertsons To Test In-Store Health Clinics

BY CSA STAFF

Boise, Idaho, Albertsons has signed a deal with Take Care Health Systems to test its in-store Health Centers in six Osco Drug Stores in the greater Kansas City market. The clinics will be staffed by certified nurse practitioners who will provide diagnosis and treatment of common family illnesses, administer vaccines and perform diagnostic screenings. Customers will be able to visit the clinics without an appointment.

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CVS Sees Quarterly Profit, Sales Rise

BY CSA STAFF

Chicago, CVS Corp. reported an 18% increase in quarterly profit and a 5.1% rise in July sales in stores open at least a year. The increases are attributed to the greater demand for prescription drugs and more general merchandise sales.

CVS surpassed its expected profits. Analysts had expected a profit of 31 cents per share, but the drugstore chain’s profit rose 33 cents per share to $275.9 million. Last year, profits were $234.5 million, or 28 cents per share.

Preliminary figures revealed a 6.1% increase in pharmacy same-store sales and a 2.9% increase in same-store general merchandise comparable sales for the month of July. CVS will release its final July sales numbers on Thursday.

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