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Fred’s posts double digit earnings gain

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Fred’s Inc. reported a 49% increase in net earnings for its fourth quarter.

Fred’s Inc. reported a 49% increase in net earnings for its fourth quarter.

The company’s net income for the quarter ended January 29, 2011, was $8.6 million, up from $5.8 million in the prior year period. For the full year, Fred’s net income was $29.6 million, up 25% over the previous year.

Fred’s total sales increased 3% to $485.6 million in the fourth quarter, and comparable store sales advanced 2.3%. For the year, total sales increased 3% to $1.84 billion, and comparable store sales increased 2.2%.

"We are pleased to report a strong finish to fiscal 2010, with earnings per share up 47% for the fourth quarter," said chief executive officer Bruce Efird. "These results, which helped push earnings per share up 27% for the year, reflect the hard work and dedication of our team and their successful execution of our updated strategies — all within the context of a challenging retail climate. Through their efforts, we made significant progress during 2010 in upgrading our stores, improving our merchandise selection and strengthening our customer service levels, which in turn helped drive increased sales and higher customer traffic."


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