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Walgreens Boots Alliance Q3 results top forecast

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Sales were boosted by 2017 deal for Rite Aid stores

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA), which entered the Dow this week, topped analysts’s forecasts with its third quarter earnings, boosted its dividend and announced a $10 billion share buyback.

“I am pleased that, in what has been a challenging environment, we have again delivered solid earnings per share growth combined with healthy cash flow,” said WBA’s executive vice chairman and chief executive officer  Stefano Pessina. “We expect to continue to drive growth, bringing more patients to our U.S. pharmacies through the recent acquisition of Rite Aid stores and through strategic partnerships.”

“The $10 billion share repurchase program announced this morning demonstrates our confidence in future business performance and, as ever, our focus on driving long-term stockholder value,” he added.

The retail pharmacy chain, which replaced General Electric on the Dow Jones Industrial Average earlier this week, said earnings for its fiscal third quarter ending in May were up. Fiscal 2018 third quarter net earnings attributable to WBA determined in accordance with GAAP increased 15.5%  to $1.3 billion compared with the same quarter a year ago, while GAAP diluted net earnings per share increased 26.2% to $1.35 compared with the same quarter a year ago.

The company also reported that net sales were up boosted by last year’s deal to buy nearly half of rival Rite Aid’s stores.

Adjusted fiscal 2018 third quarter net earnings attributable to WBA increased 5.6% to $1.5 billion, up 4.6% on a constant currency basis, compared with the same quarter a year ago. Adjusted diluted net earnings per share for the quarter increased 15.0 %t to $1.53, up 13.5 percent on a constant currency basis, compared with the same quarter a year ago.

Sales in the third quarter were $34.3 billion, an increase of 14.0% from the year-ago quarter, and an increase of 11.8% on a constant currency basis.


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