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Family Dollar to step up store openings

Matthews, NC - Family Dollar wrapped up its fiscal year by turning in its 14th consecutive quarter of double-digit earnings increases and said it will return to the aggressive store opening pace that characterized its expansion prior to the recession.
During the new fiscal year, which began Aug. 28, the retailer plans to open 450-500 new stores - including its entry into California - and remodel approximately 1,000 of its more than 7,000 units.
Earnings per share rose 19.1% to $3.12 for the fiscal year. Sales rose 8.7% to $8.5 billion.
For the fourth quarter ended Aug. 27, EPS increased 17.9% to 66 cents, while sales climbed 9.1% to $2.1 billion.
While the company's core customers - households with annual incomes of $20,000 or less - remains extremely pressured by the economy, inflation continues to drive more middle-income customers to the store, executives told analysts during the company's quarterly conference call this morning.

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