Alco says Sept. revenue measure fell 3.8 percent

ABILENE, Kan. -- Discount retailer Alco Stores Inc. said Thursday that a key measure of revenue fell 3.8 percent because of slower consumer spending and drought.

Analysts track revenue at stores open at least a year because it weeds out the effect of new store openings and closings.

The company, formerly known as Duckwall-Alco before changing its name in July, said total revenue for the five weeks ending Sept. 30 fell 0.3 percent to $40.2 million. All figures exclude fuel sales.

CEO Rich Wilson said the company will continue to focus on new plans for marketing, merchandise assortments, and expenses. "This focus should position us to navigate the slower economic growth, as well as the challenging and competitive environment," he said.

He said the company still plans to add frozen foods at 153 stores in October and November. The move is aimed at bringing more customers into the store and boosting the average size of purchases.

Alco Stores shares fell 22 cents to $6.70 in midday trading, nearing their 52-week low of $6.18 set in late August.