DALLAS — Kroger was taken by surprise not only by the worsening of economic conditions in 2009 but by the aggressive competitive response by its competitors, the company's chief financial officer said in a presentation here Wednesday. "The biggest issue we had in 2009 is we didn't keep our powder dry after the first quarter to allow for reaction to competitive changes and the macroecomic things that persisted throughout the year," Michael Schlotman said in remarks at the Morgan Stanley ...

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