March 6 Staples Inc, the largest U.S.
office supply chain, reported lower-than-expected quarterly
revenue due to weak sales in Europe and North America.
Many investors look at office-supply retailers as a
barometer of economic health because demand for their products
is closely tied to white-collar employment rates.
The net income fell to $78.1 million, or 12 cents per share,
in the fourth quarter ended Feb. 2, from $283.6 million, or 41
cents per share, a year earlier.
Sales rose 3 percent to $6.56 billion, but missed Wall
Street's average expectation of $6.72 billion, according to
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.