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Fred Meyer Reports Sharply Lower Income

Fred Meyer Inc. reported Thursday that its second-quarter net income plunged to $10.7 million, down more than 44 percent from last year’s $19.2 million.

The company blamed weaker sales of seasonal items due to poor weather and increased competition.

Net sales rose 5.23 percent to $775.8 million from $737.3 million a year ago, but gross margins were down because of the higher markdowns on seasonal goods and startup costs associated with the company’s new food warehouse near Seattle.