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By City Hall

October 14, 2011

* Walmart officials say their latest financial reports undermine opponents’ claims that the company must open 159 stores in New York City to make up for poor performance elsewhere. The Arkansas retail giant announced three consecutive months of U.S. sales growth Wednesday, following eight consecutive quarters of decline. The company plans to open 120 giant Supercenters next year but only 30 small Express stores in urban markets, far fewer than feared by the authors of the “Walmartization of NYC” report. “Once again, facts and substance win over urban myth and scare tactics,” said company spokesman Steve Restivo. “While the special interests are busy trying to get anyone to pay attention to their campaign of misinformation, we’ll remain focused on creating jobs and lowering the cost of groceries and other products that New Yorkers need.” Still, Walmart plans to build up to 100 smaller-format stores in 2013, and company opponents dismiss the idea it is suddenly rebounding. “Maybe Walmart won’t be quite as desperate after one quarter of same-store growth, but that’s nothing compared with eight consecutive quarters of downturn,” said Josh Kellerman, co-author of “Walmartization of NYC.”

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