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CASEY'S GENERAL STORES SECOND QUARTER EARNINGS UP 27.6 PERCENT; DIVIDEND DECLARED

 CASEY'S GENERAL STORES SECOND QUARTER EARNINGS UP 27.6 PERCENT;
 DIVIDEND DECLARED
 ANKENY, Iowa, Dec. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Earnings of Casey's General Stores Inc. (NASDAQ: CASY) were 27.6 percent higher in the fiscal second quarter ended Oct. 31. Sales for the convenience-store chain were about even compared to the year-ago quarter.
 Quarterly earnings were $3.9 million, or 35 cents a share, compared to $3.1 million, or 27 cents a share a year ago. Sales in this year's second quarter totaled $156.0 compared to $157.2 million.
 For the half, earnings of $7.5 million, or 68 cents a share, were 36.1 percent higher than in last year's first half when earnings were $5.5 million, or 48 cents a share. Sales for the six months totaled a record $320.9 million, up 7.4 percent over last year's first-half sales of $298.7 million.
 The average retail price of a gallon of gasoline sold by Casey's in the second quarter was $1.07, compared to $1.26 a year ago, or an average price difference of 19 cents a gallon. Retail prices were surging a year ago due to the Persian Gulf crisis.
 "When you consider that this year we sold 71.9 million gallons of gasoline at an average per-gallon cost that was 15.4 percent below a year-ago, it's easy to understand why our retail sales were flat in the second quarter," said Donald F. Lamberti, Casey's chairman and chief executive officer. "Our customers, of course, did benefit from these lower retail gasoline prices."
 Casey's earnings gains in the second quarter resulted primarily from the company's continued emphasis on cost controls. Operating expenses this year were about the same when compared to the year-ago second-quarter period, Lamberti pointed out.
 As of Oct. 31, Casey's operated 785 stores in its eight-state market area, including 581 corporate and 204 franchise outlets. This is an increase of 11 stores over last year.
 The convenience-store chain's plan to open 30 new stores in the current fiscal year has been adjusted to 20 stores. Capital spending estimates for the year remain at the previously announced $26 million. Casey's is shifting more capital resources into store remodelings and into updating underground fuel storage and monitoring systems to meet Environmental Protection Agency standards.
 "We're going back to communities where we built stores years ago and giving the stores a new look, expanding gasoline service areas and providing larger, more efficient interiors, all with the goal of better serving our customers," Lamberti said. "Our plan in this aggressive remodeling program is to have a complete turn of stores every 10 years."
 As of Oct. 31, Casey's had completed extensive remodeling and updating of 81 stores.
 Casey's board of directors, meeting Dec. 2, declared a quarterly dividend of 3 cents a share of common stock, payable Feb. 17, 1992, to shareholders of record Feb. 3, 1992.
 -0- 12/3/91 R
 /CONTACT: Doug Shull of Casey's General Stores, 515-965-6106/
 (CASY) CO: Casey's General Stores Inc. ST: Iowa IN: REA SU: ERN


KD -- DV001 -- 8676 12/03/91 10:28 EST
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Date:Dec 3, 1991
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