Feelin’ Fluey

Feelin’ Fluey

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  • Walgreens Boots Alliance raised its yearly sales forecast as currency exchange rates eased and the drugstore chain’s first-quarter revenue beat expectations. Its shares fell as its profit view for fiscal 2023 remained unchanged. The company said it also raised its full-year revenue outlook due in part to its U.S. health-care segment’s just-sealed acquisition of Summit Health. For the most recent quarter, however, the segment’s revenue came in below expectations.

  • Sales for the year will be $133.5 billion to $137.5 billion, Walgreens said Thursday in a statement, up from a previous estimate of $130.5 to $134 billion. Adjusted earnings will be $4.45 to $4.65 a share, the company said. The shares fell as much as 7.4%, the most intraday since June. The international segment saw sales of $5.2 billion, down 11% from the year-ago quarter and just ahead of analysts’ expectation of $5.17 billion. 

  • Thanks to an early flu season and strong demand for over-the-counter cough and cold medicine, sales jumped to $33.38 billion, down slightly from $33.9 billion a year earlier. The company also saw a boost in beauty and personal-care sales, which helped offset losses from a dip in demand for Covid vaccines and home test kits, which drove profits in previous quarters.

Why it matters

The company is confronting a variety of headwinds, among them a settlement of cases related to the nationwide opioid crisis that will cost the drugstore chain $6.5 billion overall. Beyond that for the last five quarters, Walgreens has beat Wall Street’s expectations as the ubiquitous drugstore chain continues to transform itself from a pharmacy-led retailer to a broader health-care company.


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