Publix net sales rose in the second quarter, and strong earnings benefited from the government’s tax cuts.
Sales for the second quarter ended June 30 were $8.8 billion, a 4% increase from $8.4 billion in 2017. Comparable store sales increased 1.7%. The company estimates sales were negatively impacted by 1.2% due to the effect of the Easter holiday being in the first quarter in 2018. In 2017, the effect of the Easter holiday was in the second quarter.
Net earnings for the second quarter were $616.2 million, compared to $495.1 million in 2017, an increase of 24.5%. Earnings per share increased to $0.84, up from $0.65 per share in 2017. Net earnings and earnings per share were positively impacted by the decrease in the federal statutory income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective in 2018 due to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.
Net earnings and earnings per share also were impacted by a new accounting standard. Excluding the impact of the new accounting standard, net earnings would have been $571 million, an increase of 15.3%, and earnings per share would have been $0.78.