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WALGREEN CO. REPORTS RECORD SALES, EARNINGS FOR SECOND QUARTER, FIRST HALF 1992

 WALGREEN CO. REPORTS RECORD SALES, EARNINGS
 FOR SECOND QUARTER, FIRST HALF 1992
 DEERFIELD, Ill., March 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Walgreen Co. (NYSE: WAG) today reported that it had record sales and earnings for the second quarter and first six months of fiscal 1992.
 Sales for the quarter ended Feb. 29, 1992 were up 11.9 percent to $2,038,016,000. Net earnings for the quarter advanced 14.3 percent to $77,149,000 or 62 cents per share, compared with earnings of $67,493,000 or 55 cents per share last year.
 Net sales for the first six months rose 11.5 percent to $3,746,747,000, and net earnings increased 13 percent to $112,598,000 or 91 cents per share, compared with earnings of $99,632,000 or 81 cents per share last year.
 Net earnings for both the quarter and six months were aided by comparison with a second quarter last year that absorbed a one-time charge of $4,118,000, or 2 cents per share, for closing the Memphis distribution center. Without this charge comparison, net earnings would have risen 10.1 percent for the quarter and 10.2 percent for the first six months.
 Profitability was helped by good cost control measures, which lowered both headquarters and store salary expenses as a percentage of sales. Advertising and store occupancy expenses as a percent of sales were also lower for the quarter. These were partially offset by higher insurance expenses.
 Pharmacy sales continued their strong advance, increasing 17.4 percent for the quarter and 17.0 percent for the first six months. Prescription sales in comparable stores (stores open at least a year) were up 14.1 percent for the first half of the fiscal year.
 "We're on schedule to open 110 new drugstores this year, and 125 next year," said C.R. Walgreen III, chairman. "Over 70 percent of new store approvals are now of the freestanding variety, which gives us greater flexibility in locating new stores and getting closer to our customers."
 Forty-seven Walgreen drugstores were opened during the first half of fiscal 1992. At March 31, Walgreens operates 1,692 drugstores in 29 states and Puerto Rico, compared to 1,599 a year ago.
 WALGREEN CO.
 Comparative Condensed Statements of Earnings
 (Unaudited, in thousands, except per share data)
 QUARTER ENDED SIX MONTHS
 Feb. 29 Feb. 28 Percent Feb. 29 Feb. 28 Percent
 1992 1991 change 1992 1991 change
 Net sales $2,038,016 $1,820,822 11.9 $3,746,747 $3,361,330 11.5
 Net
 earnings(A) 77,149 67,493 14.3 112,598 99,632 13.0
 Net earnings
 per share(B) $.62 $.55 12.7 $.91 $.81 12.3
 Dividends
 declared
 per share $.13 $.115 13.0 $.26 $.23 13.0
 (A) -- Earnings in 1991 were decreased by a one-time charge of $4,118,000 (2 cents per share) from closing the company's Memphis, Tenn, distribution center.
 (B) -- The weighted average number of common shares and equivalents used for calculating primary net earnings per share was 123,682,000 and 123,460,000 for the six months ended Feb. 29, 1992, and Feb. 28, 1991, respectively. Fully diluted net earnings per share are the same as primary net earnings per share.
 -0- 3/30/92
 /CONTACT: Thomas L. Mammoser of Walgreen, 708-940-2920/
 (WAG) CO: Walgreen Co. ST: Illinois IN: REA SU: ERN


TS -- NY022 -- 2750 03/30/92 09:41 EST
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Date:Mar 30, 1992
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