Dollar General Corporation (NYSE: DG) reported earnings per share of USD 1.84 for the fourth quarter of 2018, falling short of Wall Street’s EPS estimate of USD 1.88.
The Company announced net sales of USD 6.6 Billion for the quarter, an 8.5% increase from last year. Same-store sales rose 4% compared with the fourth quarter of 2017. Dollar General attributed its fourth quarter sales success partly to the early issuing of government SNAP assistance, resulting in increased customer traffic. The Company reported growth in its consumables, seasonal and home departments. Apparel, however, saw declines.
Dollar General saw a 9.2% increase in net sales for full-year 2018. The Company brought in USD 25.6 Billion compared to USD 23.5 Billion in fiscal year 2017. Same-store sales grew 3.2%. Although customer traffic overall was flat, the Company reported an increase in average sale amount.
For fiscal 2019, Dollar General expects a net sales increase of 7% along with same-store sales growth of 2.5%. The Company projects earnings per share to range between USD 6.30 and USD 6.50. Dollar General said in 2019 it will invest USD 50 million in self-checkout lanes and the improvement of fresh and frozen food distribution.
“Looking ahead to 2019, we are excited to introduce two new transformational strategic initiatives, DG Fresh and Fast Track. DG Fresh, which is designed to enable self-distribution of fresh and frozen products, is already up and running in approximately 300 stores and Fast Track, which we believe will enhance in-store labor productivity and customer convenience, is launching soon” said Todd Vasos, Dollar General’s chief executive officer.
In 2019, the Company intends to open 975 new stores and remodel 1,000.