Rite Aid sees comps increase in October

Rite Aid's same-store sales increased by 2.1% this month compared with October 2012. The pharmacy chain also issued an estimate of the negative effects of Hurricane Sandy on its sales.

The increase included a 0.6% decrease in front-end same-store sales and an increase in pharmacy same-store sales of 3.4%, which were lowered by 0.85% due to introductions of new generic drugs. Same-store script count increased by 1.1%. Total sales for the month were $1.961 billion, a 2.2% increase over October 2012. The chain currently operates 4,599 stores.

For the first 34 weeks of the year, same-store sales decreased by 0.1%, including 0.1% decreases in front-end and pharmacy same-store sales, as well as a 0.2% increase in same-store scripts. Total sales were $16.41 billion, compared with $16.46 billion in October 2012.

According to Rite Aid's estimates, the cycling of the effects of pre-storm sales on last year's results reduced front-end same-store sales by 1.4% and same-store scripts by 0.3% due to a benefit from an increase in sales in the days that immediately preceded the storm. The company expects the cycling of the effects of the storm to benefit November sales.