Tuesday, April 29, 2008

U.S. drug arm pushes Jean Coutu into the red

From the Financial Post:
Jean Coutu Group Inc., Canada's second-biggest pharmacy chain, reported a third-quarter loss after losing money on its holdings in U.S. drug retailer Rite Aid Corp.

The net loss was $269.2-million, or $1.08 a share, in the three months through March 1, compared with net income of $232.1-million (89 cents) a year earlier, the Longueuil, Que.-based company said on Tuesday in a statement.

Profit excluding Jean Coutu's (PJC.A/TSX) stake in Rite Aid missed analysts' estimates by 1 cent.

Rite Aid reported April 10 it had a loss of US$952.2-million on an income-tax charge and costs to integrate the Brooks and Eckerd pharmacies it bought from Jean Coutu. The Canadian company holds a 30% stake in Camp Hill, Penn.- based Rite Aid that it acquired as part of its US$4-billion sale of the U.S. pharmacy chains last year. ...more

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