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Publix increases stock price in fourth quarter results

BY DSN STAFF

Publix’s saw some major changes in its newly released financial standing. It was reported that sales for 2017’s fourth quarter, were $8.9 billion — a 2.1% decrease from the previous year’s $9.1 billion. On the other hand, the brand’s comparable-store sales for the same quarter increased 3.2%, and its net earnings also increased by 40.8% to $766.6 million, when compared to the previous year. The Lakeland, Fla.-based company saw an uptick in its earnings per share, which went up to $1.04, up $0.71 per share from the prior year.

The company’s net earnings and earnings per share were impacted by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, and excluding the impact of the Tax Act, earnings would have been $524.4 million — decreasing by 0.4% — and earnings per share would have been $0.74, the company said. Publix’s sales for the fiscal year ended Dec. 30, 2017, were $34.6 billion — a 1.6% increase from the previous year and net earnings increased 13.1% to $2.3 billion.

Earnings weren’t the only thing to change for Publix. It’s stock price also saw a positive change, increasing from $36.85 per share to $41.40 per share.

“I’m delighted we had a significant increase in our stock price,” Publix CEO & President Todd Jones said. “I’m proud of our associate-owners for their dedicated service to our customers and communities.”

Currently, Publix’s stock is not publicly traded and is instead made available for sale only to its current associates and members of the board of directors.

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CVS Health Foundation gives $1M in grants to 49 clinics

BY David Salazar

The CVS Health Foundation will be giving out $1 million across 49 free and charitable health clinics throughout the country. The Woonsocket, R.I.-based charitable organization created by CVS Health on Thursday announced the grants as part of an extended commitment to the National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics. The grants are aimed at improving the health of patients with such chronic conditions as diabetes and hypertension, the organization said.

“The rising cost of health care can make finding quality and affordable care harder to come by for many Americans,” said Eileen Howard Boone, president of the CVS Health Foundation. “Through our support of the National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics, we’re able to increase access to quality care, improve chronic disease management and care coordination to help improve health outcomes for the most vulnerable patients and reduce health care costs in the communities we serve.”

The new contributions bring the foundation’s total contribution to NAFC to more than $4.5 million since 2015. Clinics in 24 states will be receiving grants ranging from $10,000 to $20,000.

“The NAFC and our network of charitable health care providers are beyond grateful for the continued support and unwavering commitment we receive from the CVS Health Foundation,” NAFC CEO Nicole Lamoureux said. “Diabetes and hypertension are the top two diagnoses found among our patient population. This year’s funding will allow our Free and Charitable Clinics to focus on improving their patients’ health outcomes for these chronic conditions, and in turn improving the health of communities across the country.”

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Report: Kroger joins retailers in upping age restriction on gun sales

BY DSN STAFF

Kroger has joined Walmart and Dick’s Sporting Goods in increasing its age restriction on the purchase of firearms sold through its Fred Meyer locations in response to the recent school shooting in Parkland, Fla. The supermarket chain will no longer sell guns to customers under the age of 21.

“Recent events demonstrate the need for additional action on the part of responsible gun retailers,” Jessica Adelman, a spokeswoman for the Cincinnati-based chain, shared with The Wall Street Journal. “In response to the tragic events in Parkland and elsewhere, we’ve taken a hard look at our policies and procedures for firearm sales.

According to the report, Kroger already had stopped selling assult-style semiautomatic rifles in Oregon, Washington and Idaho locations several years ago.

Fred Meyer, which sells shotguns, .22 caliber rifles and bolt action hunting rifles, will be reducing the merchandising footprint dedicated to the set, as well. Though that has less to do with the school shootings, but rather to “softer demand and changing customer preferences,” Adelman told WSJ.

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