LAKELAND, Fla. (FNS) -- Net earnings at Publix Super Markets here jumped 34% in the third quarter from the comparable 1993 period, rising to $41.8 million from $31 million, the company reported in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing. Comparable-store sales rose 5.6% in the quarter while sales overall gained 15.8%. For the quarter, which ended Sept. 24, sales totaled $2.05 billion, compared with $1.8 billion in the year-ago period.
During the first three quarters of the year, net earnings hit $169.4 million, a 27.8% increase from $132.5 million in the comparable 1993 period. Sales for the nine months rose 13.3% to $6.2 billion from $5.5 billion last year, with comparable-store sales gaining 5.2%. During the first three quarters of this year, Publix opened 36 new stores, enlarged or remodeled 13 stores and closed three stores, bringing capital spending costs to $274.5 million. An additional $125.5 million has been budgeted for capital needs through the year's end, the filing said. During the first three quarters of 1993, the company spent $205.2 million to open 16 new stores, close four stores and remodel and enlarge an unidentified number of stores.