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99 Cents Only Stores Earnings Rise 24%

CITY OF COMMERCE, Calif. - Net income for the quarter ended June 30 at 99 Cents Only Stores rose 23.7 percent to $13.5 million compared to the year-earlier period. Retail sales for the were $155.4 million, up $32.9 million or 26.9 percent, reported the company, which emphasizes name-brand consumables, including a standard selection of food and HBC products.

Same-store-sales increased only 2.1 percent, but those receipts were adversely affected by this year's shift in the Easter selling season from April 2001 in the second quarter to March 2002 in the first quarter. Same-store-sales for the first six months of 2002 increased 5 percent.

Retail gross margin for the quarter was 41.8 percent, a slight improvement over the 2001 period chalked up to favorable buys of both close-outs and re-orderable product. Selling, general and administrative expenses were 27.7% of sales, compared with 26.9% in 2001.

"We are excited with how our stores in new markets are performing including Northern and Central California as well as Phoenix and Las Vegas," said company president Eric Schiffer. "We plan to open fifteen additional stores this year with six to seven stores opening in the third quarter. The Company expects to continue to open 25% new stores per year."

99 Cents Only Stores operates 139 retail stores in the Western U.S. This week in Phoenix, it will open its 17th new store of the year.
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