Lowe's Companies, Inc., a leading home improvement retailers, reported net earnings of U.S. $590 million for the quarter ended April 29, 2005, a 30.5-percent increase over the same period in 2004. Diluted earnings per share increased 32.1 percent to $0.74 from $0.56 in the first quarter of 2004. Sales for the quarter increased 14.2 percent to $9.91 billion, up from $8.68 billion in the first quarter of 2004. Comparable store sales for the first quarter increased 3.8 percent.
"While an unusually cold, wet March in many parts of the country created challenges, our stores delivered another strong quarter," stated Robert A. Niblock, Lowe's chairman, president, and CEO. "We achieved high single-digit comparable store sales in February and April, but they were offset by negative low single-digit comps in weather-affected March."
During the quarter, Lowe's opened 27 new stores, including two relocations. As of April 29, 2005, Lowe's operated 1,112 stores in 48 states, representing 126.5 million sq ft of retail selling space, a 13.1 percent increase over 2004.
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