Walgreens to shut 200 US stores as part of cost-cutting plan

National News

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – JULY 09: A pedestrian walks by a Walgreens store on July 9, 2015 in San Francisco, California. Walgreens Boot Alliance Inc. reported better than expected third quarter profits with net earnings of $1.3 billion, or $1.18 per share, compared to $714 million, or $0.74 per share one year ago. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (AP) — Pharmacy chain Walgreens plans to close 200 stores in the United States as it seeks to cut costs.

The company said in a regulatory filing Tuesday the closings are part of its previously announced plan to trim costs by $1.5 billion in a few years. In May, the company announced plans to close 200 stores in the United Kingdom.

The Deerfield, Illinois-based company operates over 18,000 stores worldwide. In June it reported a 24% decline in quarterly net income and predicted that annual earnings would be roughly flat with the prior year. Walgreens has been hit by challenges including reimbursement cuts and lower price increases for branded drugs.

In the year to date, Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. shares are down nearly 25% while the broader S&P 500 is up 13%.

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