PLEASANTON, Calif. — Safeway here said Thursday higher fuel prices fueled sales and profits during the first fiscal quarter, although one-time charges depleted reported net earnings for the period. "When fuel prices go up, we have the cheapest price compared with branded companies," Steve Burd, chairman, president and chief executive officer, told analysts during a conference call. "And when you add in promotional programs that reduce the price per gallon, it all works to our advantage." ...

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