COVID-19 shots, tests fuel Walgreens sales

Walgreens is getting a big boost from COVID-19 shots and tests.

The drug store chain said Thursday it had administered nearly 16 million COVID-19 vaccinations and over 6 million tests in the latest quarter. That helped drive comparable retail sales up nearly 11%. That’s the highest in more than two decades.

This comes as health authorities and governments worldwide push for more vaccinations and testing amid the fast spread of the Omicron variant.

Walgreens’ quarterly earnings breezed past analysts’ estimates, and the retailer raised its profit growth forecast for the full year.

But shares fell in early trading Thursday.

As rivals such as Amazon seek to expand beyond the online pharmacy business, Walgreens has been diversifying its services beyond drugstores. It recently invested in companies that provide primary and home care.

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