Whole Foods comparable sales growth slows, shares fall

Wed Nov 6, 2013 4:15pm EST

Nov 6 (Reuters) - Whole Foods Market Inc on Wednesday reported same-store sales that decelerated in the fourth quarter and the grocer lowered its sales forecast for fiscal 2014, sending shares down 8.7 percent in after hours trading.

Same-store sales, a key gauge of performance for retailers, rose 5.9 percent for the fiscal fourth quarter ended Sept. 29, the slowest pace of the year. In the current quarter, those sales are up 5.8 percent so far.

Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods, the largest U.S. natural and organic grocery chain, lowered its same-store sales growth for fiscal 2014 by 1 percentage point on both ends of the range to a rise 5.5 percent to 7 percent.

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