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EARNINGS-Dollar General sales surge as economic downturn makes shoppers thrifty

Credit: REUTERS/JIM YOUNG

Dollar General Corp beat quarterly same-store sales estimates on Thursday, as more Americans bought low-price groceries and household items from the discount retailer during the coroanvirus-induced economic downturn.

Adds details on buyback program, sales estimates, share movement

Aug 27 (Reuters) - Dollar General Corp DG.N beat quarterly same-store sales estimates on Thursday, as more Americans bought low-price groceries and household items from the discount retailer during the coroanvirus-induced economic downturn.

The company said it had restarted its share buyback plan and would repurchase an additional $2 billion worth of stock.

Persistent unemployment has led to higher demand for more affordable cereals, vegetables and discretionary items such as clothing. Sales at dollar stores remained strong even after the initial panic-buying surge at the start of lockdowns died down.

The company said same-store sales rose 18.8% in the second quarter ended July 31, above analysts' average estimate of a 15.1% increase, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Net sales rose 24.4% to $8.68 billion, beating average estimate of $8.35 billion.

Net income rose to $787.6 million, or $3.12 per share, from $426.6 million, or $1.65 per share, a year earlier.

(Reporting by Uday Sampath in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

((UdaySampath.Kumar@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S.+1 646 223 8780; Twitter: @sampath_uday; Reuters Messaging: UdaySampath.Kumar.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

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