Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) reported sales of $34.3 billion for the third quarter of 2018, an increase of 14% from the same period last year. Sales rose 11.8% on a constant currency basis.
On a GAAP basis, net earnings attributable to Walgreens Boots Alliance grew 15.5% to $1.3 billion while EPS rose 26.2% to $1.35 compared with the prior-year period. Adjusted earnings totaled $1.5 billion or $1.53 per share, reflecting increases of 5.6% and 15% respectively from last year. Adjusted earnings figures beat analyst expectations but the stock fell 0.7% premarket.
During the quarter, sales for Retail Pharmacy USA increased 15% while comparable store sales dropped 1.2% from the prior-year period. US pharmacy sales grew 19%, driven primarily by higher prescription volume from the Rite Aid stores acquisition and from central specialty.
Retail Pharmacy International sales improved 6.6% and Pharmaceutical Wholesale sales grew 12.6% compared to the prior-year period.
Walgreens raised the lower end of its fiscal year 2018 outlook by $0.05 per share. The company expects adjusted diluted EPS to come in at $5.90 to $6.05 for the full year.
The board of directors authorized a $10-billion share repurchase program and also increased the quarterly dividend by 10% to $0.44 per share.