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VOL. 42 | NO. 48 | Friday, November 30, 2018

Dollar General meets 3Q expectations, but trims outlook

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NEW YORK (AP) — Dollar General Corp. reported a boost in third-quarter profit that met Wall Street expectations, but it expects lingering costs from hurricane season to cut into finances for the remainder of the year.

The warning over costs and a trimmed outlook weighed on shares. The stock fell $7.06, or 6.3 percent, to $104.66 in premarket trading.

The discount retailer's profit jumped 32 percent to $334.1 million, or $1.26 per share, matching Wall Street forecasts. Revenue jumped 8.7 percent to $6.42 billion in the period, beating Street forecasts for $6.39 billion in sales.

Same-store sales — or sales in stores open at least a year, a key measure of a retailer's health — jumped 2.8 percent as customers spent more per visit. Analysts polled by FactSet expected a 2.4 percent boost in same-store sales.

But, the company warned that it will continue to see costs from the most recent hurricane season. It said those costs shaved 5 cents per share from the third-quarter results and it expects about 9 cents per share in costs for the year.

The company cut its full-year outlook to between $5.85 and $6.05 per share, from a prior outlook of $5.95 to $6.15 per share. Analysts surveyed by FactSet expect $6.11 per share, on average.

The Goodlettsville-based retailer operates more than 15,000 stores across 44 states.

Dollar General shares have increased 20 percent since the beginning of the year, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index has increased slightly more than 4 percent. The stock has risen 27 percent in the last 12 months.

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Elements of this story were generated by Automated Insights (http://automatedinsights.com/ap) using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on DG at https://www.zacks.com/ap/DG