NEW YORK – Regional supermarket chain Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. (GAP) on Friday reported a wider-than-expected quarterly loss as it pushed ahead with a reorganization and called its near-term outlook "conservative."
Its loss swelled to $75.3 million, or $1.96 a share, in its fiscal third quarter ended Dec. 4 from a year-ago loss of $25.3 million, or 66 cents a share, although the grocer said it had maintained market share in the period.
According to Reuters Estimates, analysts had expected the company, which is the parent of supermarket chain A&P (search), Waldbaum's (search) and Food Emporium (search), to post a loss of $1.19 a share.
The Montvale, N.J.-based company said this loss included $37 million worth of charges that were of a non-operating nature and its Canadian operations produced another profitable performance.
Sales at stores open at a least a year, which is a key gauge known as same-store sales, fell 1 percent from a year earlier.
Total sales for the quarter at its 650 stores in the United States and Canada amounted to $2.52 billion, up from $2.48 billion a year earlier.
"Our near-term outlook remains conservative as we expect no major upturn in consumer confidence and spending in the U.S., and therefore no easing of competitive pressures," said Chief Executive Christian Haub.