October 7, 2008

Safeway Shares Rise on Profits


Higher gas sales and a boost from its more upscale stores helped Pleasanton-based grocer Safeway Inc. post a slight rise in profit in its third fiscal quarter.

The nation's second-biggest grocery store said Tuesday its profit rose nearly 3 percent to $199.7 million, or 46 cents per share, for the three months ended Sept. 6, from $194.6 million, or 44 cents per share, last year. Its sales rose nearly 4 percent to $10.17 billion from $9.78 billion, helped by higher gas sales and contributions from its more upscale Lifestyle stores. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected earnings of 47 cents per share and sales of $10.08 billion.

afeway plans to continue cutting costs and expects 2008 profit to at least match Wall Street expectations. In morning trading, shares of Safeway rose $1.32, or 6 percent, to $23.09.


Santa Clara-based Advanced Micro Devices Inc., the chipmaker struggling to take on Intel Corp., rose the most in six years after deciding to spin off some plants, part of an investment of up to $8.4 billion from the Abu Dhabi government.

AMD climbed 70 cents, or 17 percent, to $4.93 during mid-morning trading. Earlier the shares advanced as much as 31 percent, the most since October 2002.

The cash infusion is a lifeline for AMD, which may report a third straight loss this year and is falling behind on investments needed to keep up. Intel spends more on plants and research than AMD makes in annual revenue.

"People thought that AMD was on the brink of bankruptcy," said Doug Freedman, an analyst at American Technology Research in San Francisco. "It definitely pushes them far away from that."

Compiled from staff and wire reports. Got Bay Area business news? Reach Drew Voros at 925-943-8099 or [email protected]

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