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BOCA RATON, FL-Locally based Office Depot Inc. on Tuesday reported a wider-than-expected loss in the second quarter, along with a 22% falloff in sales over the past year. The office supply chain has 114 fewer stores throughout North America than a year ago, though sales in stores open since last year were down 18% for the latest quarter.

Office Depot posted a loss of $82.6 million in the quarter ended June 27, compared with a loss of $2 million during the same three-month period in 2008. Quarterly revenue over the year fell to $2.8 billion from $3.6 billion a year ago, with North American sales falling 21% to $1.1 billion.

“Second-quarter business results met our expectations given the challenging economic conditions and the period’s normal seasonality,” Mike Newman, Office Depot chief financial officer, stated in a release. He noted that the company’s liquidity efforts generated positive cash flow of $9 million in the second-quarter after financing activities.

Analysts tracking Office Depot had anticipated far lesser losses for the second quarter. One analyst remarked that the latest results shed little light on the company’s projected path to improvement.

Office Depot closed five stores, opened three and relocated one during the second quarter, bringing its total North American store count to 1,158. The stores average just over 24,000 square feet each.

Fewer store openings are planned in the coming year after Office Depot previously said it would close 9% of its stores in North America. The company in June received a $350-million investment from London-based private equity firm BC Partners Ltd in exchange for a 20% stake.

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