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Casey's 2Q profit down as sales drop on some items

ANKEY, Iowa (AP) -- Casey's General Stores Inc.'s said Monday that its net income fell nearly 13 percent in its fiscal second quarter on lower sales of gasoline, groceries and cigarettes.

Casey's made $32.9 million, or 85 cents per share, in the three months that ended Oct. 31. That compares with $37.6 million, or 98 cents a share, in the year-ago period.

Revenue rose 7.2 percent to $1.91 billion.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet, on average, expected earnings of 85 cents per share on revenue of $1.91 billion.

The company said same-store sales of gasoline fell 0.4 percent. Groceries and other merchandise dropped 0.7 percent. Cigarette sales were hurt by competitive pricing and an increase in an Illinois state excise tax, CEO Robert J. Myers said in a statement.

The company recorded a 10.1 percent increase in same-store sales of prepared foods, like pizza.

Same-store sales are an important measure of financial performance because they strip away the effect of recently opened or closed stores.

Operating expenses were up 10.6 percent as the company continues to remodel stores and open new ones.

Shares of Casey's fell $1.28, or 2.6 percent, to end at $48.54 per share. The price has ranged from $46.15 to $63 per share in the past 52 weeks.

Casey's, based in Ankeny, Iowa, operates stores across the Midwest.