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Tax Refund Blame Game: Family Dollar's Earnings Miss

Daniel Acker | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Family Dollar Stores reported a weaker-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday, blaming a delay in tax refunds for hurting sales at the end of January and early February.

The discount retailer also warned it would have weak sales of discretionary items such as apparel and home goods heading into the rest of its financial year. It cited financial pressures facing customers and unseasonably cold spring weather.

"Our customers' discretionary spend is expected to remain constrained," Chief Executive Howard Levine said in a statement.

In the second quarter ended March 2, net income rose to $140.1 million, or $1.21 per share, from $136.4 million, or $1.15 per share, a year earlier.

Analysts, on average, looked for a profit of $1.22 per share, according to Thomson Reuters.

Sales rose 17.7 percent to $2.89 billion, meeting Wall Street expectations.

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