ARCADIA, Calif. -- Vons Cos. here said improved service, effective marketing programs and competitive pricing helped boost financial results for the third quarter and 40 weeks ended Oct. 8. Sales rose 3.2% for the 16-week quarter to $1.6 billion -- despite operating seven fewer stores, the company noted -- and 0.7% to $3.9 billion for the 40 weeks, while same-store sales rose 5.3% for the quarter and 3.1% for the year-to-date. Net income rose to $18.5 million for the quarter and $47 million ...

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