GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A stabilizing Michigan economy as well as distribution efficiencies and a tax benefit helped Spartan Stores post a modest increase in net earnings despite sluggish sales during the fiscal second quarter ended Sept. 11, the retailer said Wednesday. Earnings of $11.2 million, or 50 cents a share, improved by 7.7% as compared to the same period last year. Consolidated sales of $602 million fell by 1.3%. Comparable retail store sales, excluding fuel, declined 4.7%, which ...

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