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SARA LEE REPORTS RECORD EARNINGS FOR SECOND QUARTER 1992

 SARA LEE REPORTS RECORD EARNINGS FOR SECOND QUARTER 1992
 CHICAGO, Jan. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Sara Lee Corporation (NYSE: SLE) today announced record sales and earnings for the second quarter ended Dec. 28, 1991.
 Net income for the quarter rose 13.6 percent to $189.4 million from $166.8 million reported for the same period last year. Primary earnings per share increased 13.2 percent to $.77, compared with $.68 a year ago. Net sales for the quarter were $3.6 billion, up 6.8 percent over last year's $3.4 billion.
 For the first six months of fiscal 1992, net income rose $452.8 million, a 65.8 percent increase over the $273.1 million reported for the same period last year. Primary earnings per share increased 69.1 percent to $1.86 from $1.10 per share a year earlier. Net sales increased 4.2 percent to $6.7 billion from last year's $6.4 billion. Results for the six months include a previously announced non-recurring earnings per share benefit of $.60 in the first quarter, reflecting the gain from the sale of the corporation's European-based over-the-counter pharmaceutical business, net of restructuring charges. Excluding the non-recurring gain, primary earnings per share for the first six months increased 14.5 percent to $1.26 per share.
 "We continue to enjoy higher margins in our U.S. food businesses due to an improved product mix and lower operating costs," said John H. Bryan, chairman and chief executive officer of Sara Lee Corporation. "Recent acquisitions contributed strongly to gains in our non-food businesses and helped to expand our international activities."
 A performance review for each business segment follows (dollars in millions):
 SARA LEE PACKAGED FOODS
 Second Quarter Change Six Months Change
 1992 1991 1992 1991
 Sales
 Packaged meats &
 bakery $1,217.2 $1,343.1 (9.4) $2,403.1 $2,634.0 (8.8)
 Coffee & grocery 508.5 518.5 (1.9) 941.9 973.8 (3.3)
 Total 1,725.7 1,861.6 (7.3) 3,345.0 3,607.8 (7.3)
 Operating income
 Packaged meats &
 bakery $75.5 $68.7 9.8 $122.6 $110.8 10.6
 Coffee & grocery 67.1 66.3 1.3 120.6 116.7 3.3
 Total 142.6 135.0 5.6 243.2 227.5 6.9
 Sales for packaged meats and bakery declined during the second quarter and the first half of fiscal 1992, while operating income for this line of business increased in both periods. The higher margins are due to lower hog costs, a better product mix at the U.S. bakery operations and improved operating efficiencies. Unit volume for packaged meats rose 3 percent during the quarter, with gains in most product categories. Sara Lee Bakery unit volume declined 2 percent in the quarter, although operating profits increased. For the first six months of fiscal 1992, unit volume for packaged meats increased 2 percent and unit volume for bakery decreased 2 percent.
 The coffee and grocery line of business reported a decrease in sales for the second quarter and first six months of the fiscal year, while operating income increased modestly for both periods. Unit volume for European coffee decreased 2 percent for the quarter and the first six months. Sales and operating income for this line of business were negatively affected by the weakening of foreign currencies relative to the U.S. dollar.
 SARA LEE PACKAGED CONSUMER PRODUCTS
 Second Quarter Change Six Months Change
 1992 1991 1992 1991
 Sales
 Personal
 products $1,577.9 $1,173.7 34.4 $2,758.2 $2,171.8 27.0
 Household and
 personal care 290.5 328.7 (11.6) 598.1 651.8 (8.2)
 Total 1,868.4 1,502.4 24.4 3,356.3 2,823.6 18.9
 Operating income
 Personal
 products $177.8 $146.2 21.6 $302.5 $251.0 20.5
 Household and
 personal care 29.1 36.3 (19.9) 50.5 68.0 (25.7)
 Total 206.9 182.5 13.3 353.0 319.0 10.7
 Personal products sales and operating income increased in the second quarter and first half of fiscal 1992, due to good results from continuing operations as well as benefits from recent acquisitions, including Playtex Apparel, Inc. Worldwide hosiery, knit products and foundations reported sales and profit gains for both periods. Worldwide hosiery unit volume grew 7 percent, with strength in both U.S. and foreign markets. Knit products unit volume grew 8 percent with particular strength in activewear sales. Foundations unit volume increased 6 percent in the quarter. For the first six months of fiscal 1992, worldwide hosiery unit volume rose 3 percent, knit products volume grew 11 percent and foundations unit sales rose 13 percent.
 The household and personal care line of business reported a decline in sales and operating income for both the quarter and the first six months of fiscal 1992 reflecting the divestiture of the over-the-counter pharmaceutical business and the negative impact of the stronger U.S. dollar.
 Net interest for the quarter fell 26 percent to $23.9 million from $32.4 million one year ago. The effective tax rate in the current quarter was 34.8 percent versus 35.5 percent for the second quarter of fiscal 1991. For the first six months, net interest expense was $50.2 million versus $66.2 million, and the effective tax rate for the period was 35.5 percent in both years.
 Sara Lee Corporation, an international food and consumer products company, markets a wide variety of brand-name products including Hanes, Hanes Her Way, L'eggs, Champion, Kiwi, Hillshire Farm, Ball Park, Jimmy Dean, Douwe Egberts, Dim and Sara Lee.
 -0- 1/22/92
 /CONTACT: Anne M. McCarthy (media), 312-558-8727, or Lynn L. McHugh (analysts), 312-558-8464, both of Sara Lee/
 (SLE) CO: Sara Lee Corporation ST: Illinois IN: FOD SU: ERN


PS -- NY104 -- 2559 01/22/92 19:48 EST
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Date:Jan 22, 1992
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