A study of the retail meat trade in five Wisconsin cities, 1921

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Title:
A study of the retail meat trade in five Wisconsin cities, 1921
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United States -- Bureau of Agricultural Economics. -- Cost of Marketing Division
Adams, Lawrence Alfred, b. 1897
United States -- Dept. of Agriculture
United States -- Bureau of Agricultural Economics
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serial   ( sobekcm )

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aleph - 028428188
oclc - 501606701
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i1[, ipfUgton. iD. C.


SJa, 1923.
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Assistant Mrkat lag SpeclisU t


Coct of ftrkstik g Divlmion


A. amrthout

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I Loca~tion of Cities studiedt.

Daring this canvass of the stores, Information was also secured, con-
Co~rnIag the accounting records and. financial data available. These stores
"re later visited by accountant a, and. operating data were very carefully
iKalfed, fiecords of 64 stores were available for this analysis.
::" ii



















::this lad of accwuting records has been felt by the leaders in the
I: :1trae and. in response to tWir expressed desire, the Bureau of a-gricultural
j; Xconookus, cooperating with the Bureau, of Business Besearch of Northwestern
I OUnlvirslty,, bas wavepred a standardized sys*temn of accounts. Trains yseme haj
1 Dbeeh'simplified to require a minimumnx of labor and yet is Inclasive enough to
b: furnish data for a proper analysis of the business. Its aise also furnished,
baais for comparison between stores of different sizes .. type. and in
J ++++++i+++:+t ....-:
K +++++M+++,+,::.++. +.( .

',;;+Location o. Cities.*t..i.d.

Dtrittthistanvasso:thestare"I":oratio.m: als..o.r..con
ce g i acunig eorsan iapil aa vl aia hes soe
are''',,:': :,. lae istdbyacwaat5 toeat..at.ee.eycaeul
aalle.flcrt f i soeswreaaialefr..s.n2.ss
....Thi : .i+,:: ;: lc facsigrcrsksbenfl ytelaesi h
!iiiiidesire.,tbe B.r..u of Agricultural
E: tccxs opeain it heBreuofBuies e acho Nrthestr
Umrflrsity :+: + .. as. prprda+ttrizdsse o cont. Ti ss a
tei'saplfle o eursaailnu f aoradye s nluie nuait
funshdtafr rpe nayiso hebsies.Isus:ls unse
a et orcmprso etee toe o ifeen:szs'n tps6a,.i























u nmor or store in posa tion so iwnr aa cna wos nac 11e Me iP
that this pbas of the subject could not be devl1ped. The t .toAa.
whole, has little knowledge of the use and importance of such dat, OStPV
sequently gives little effort... to keeping .ach record. ..

It is recoapilied that the data at hand are nat sffleolent to *at
possible the accurate statmaet of conclusions. O(k the other Mall
sufficient to point out some rather interesting and helpful facts ai. f.,..l:il i
operation of retail mat stores. tany subjects, the discussion of whi"l.
would be particularly helpful, must of nesseity be disregarded as no af
quate information was obtainable. Among then are the iinortant ubJfti "ii......
the relation of turnover to margin, investment st profits, the busialnss-1 !...
mortality rate, the relation of experience amA alp of the particular
ization to its success. It is hoped that In future studies som rather. .A
inite information can be obtained which will makes possible profitable 4s .
cushions of these important subject..

PROFITS IN N l TRAU.

One of the outstaatnlg results of this survey is that 27 out of |
markets which were carefully analyzed in repard to expenses sowhad a 1t.
when charged with interest on capital invested, depreciation, and a& sLIWry
for the proprietor. The need of more adequate records is unqunesttoms wa "1(
a survey of this sort will disclose 42 per cent of the stores operating at s
a loss. In only a few cases did the proprietor know whether the busiaeos .:
was making a profit or showed a loss. If he knew he was operating at a loe,.
it Is possible he might find it advantagepous to enter some other line 'of
business, or even to work for someone else as an employee. An analysle 'of
the 58 per cent of the stores that did make a profit indicates that larp
profits are not common, nineteen per cent of all stores having made a anet
profit of less than three per cent on sales. Thirty per cent made froa 3 to
6 per cent, nine per cent made over 6 per cent, with but two stores =sring
over S per cent net profit. These profits, of course, are in addition to a
salary which It is assumed could be earned in outside aeohlamut, plus in-
terest at 6 per cent on capital invested.



















.mtm l US OpF MmW unw*i %M Was zar w wIaN ,l, o
O%.. c .+et Of thes IMeo i In markets of this Class.


Si *to" onun were not Important in any
9w 1 F 9. 1a this tfte of wuhe t amountot to

Ombinfttlan mot ad grocey stores we of
an Wn In may ow othtoer city. Zere they all 37
Cabatin market sales in Mluaimawe were
jog"*:.w sa O f tw five cities.
r.J,~4 7;;: bie L.
Lmm'!i!*0 I : Cent of asles by types of N
ii .:


7 aMUM


city except Miluikee,
1a of the reported


more importance in Nadi-
per cent of all reported
only 12 per cent, the


rwets.


Per cent of Total ales in: Stalls
SCity Straight : in
Ih&t : Combi ation : Chain Store : Public
.Iblkrkotsa : Varleitel_ : Markets
*. .- U


.......... ................
Ib*lma ..... .....
' e a .A .. ........
k Cl~are ....-.......


1^


iS M 01 Gan. CMIDT. tCfrVDY As U-aT UMLI


this present murey of the retail meat trade Indicate that stores
Miatalning a delivery service ave. on the average, slightly higher total
eoisse per dollar of ales. Previous stiles point toward the same conclu-
SionM. te stores maaitaining thie service must pay for it either by charging
sligbti hier prices, or by a reduction in the overbead percentage by at-
ttUfg an increased volume of business through th extra service rertered.
It ie tportan that the conamr utoerstmS that delivery is an additional
upMcific erVice. Unfortaately, this is not generally realized, for the
public does not as to be willing to accept a price policy based on om price


am CLare


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awWe.


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Te two largest cities, Ullwuanee and otiS., applE to wsS
lese than any of the other cities. The larger use of ceait lUtMdl
cities is probably due tc the acl t at the dealer is better aquinM
with his customers and feel p.otect6, in extending credit, U eeiu
the larger city, kmowing little ao- his customers, Aoee not feel iA
fldAnt of payment.
... .. .................... :!
hble No. 2.

PNr pent of cash, credit. non-dlivery and delinry maie.


Ci ty

Milwaukee ...................
Racine ......................
Madison .....................
Green Bay ...................
Elu Claire ..................


: Cash : Credit
: Per Cent : Per Cent
: s: 20
77 23
b5 : 35
60 36
50 50


Non. S
:'Deliver
Per Centi
93 :
89
69 i
71 1
61 :
**
6*


VQ DECIDE


-mIm


TOWARD CAM AND VITIT


Anmers from these dealer. repra-ing the tendency of the pablc to
change buiyng habits seem to indicate that taere is no definite teulemy.
The majority felt that there ms no change in their business. About Wai
of those reporting a change felt that the temieocy was toward cah, while
the other half felt their trade was tending toward credit.


39


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UiM IS i l i & a i w IU s & aaasw Pa vs wa s w Mas.ia &AW "a ur talwme m
hs. Oft-6 tI*m $20,000 yearly. The sales valus of the meat sold by
| *tore is tat 2 per oent of aU the meat sold by stores reporting.
to ot hMa, only fomw per cent of the total number of stores had
Is of OWs WO, par SW, Pt til CI*S* of Stp0aa handled 2 per
lot U teta aet
+o:1f t b m t at l eales .. .... .. .... .... ...
... ... ... ... ... .. ..... ... ... ... .. ... .
..r, ": ,( '.-.i. *'I ... *b" e o 3 .

............ or was SIZE or *SBB
: ti re poupe according to volume of ealess.


.m ales
** v


Store a
'fumber


reorting sales
: Per cent


: Per cent of
:. total ale s
: reported


00, O ; 1o.00
:: ..* ,^^ ^^ '*Sf o~ ^- 16 ^":lr *.o b L(o.ooo ....
0ooo- oooo ..... :
6,0er $80,00 ..... .....:
iOve *80.O00 ..... C ;


total. .*.........
-I -_


83
zoo
57
26


590


20
S32
16
11
21


100


10G


L *.Of t0e 64 store which huW the accurate accounting records, only 14
f oppi bA| sad e as I= aA $ao,0oc. tdo difference seorn due to the
ftht that the larBr ad sore up-to-date stores have bookkeeping records
*hich famish the information Mee. ntry for successful conduct of the bui-
M ae.. It i alseo possible that es masure of optliam Influenced the
: alerre s estlmate of their volume of salee.


IJlAfgl PUO MWO2


a1tM ocred daring pftrevious surveys of the retail meat business by
te Department Indicate that a patronage of at least 1,000 persons is neces-
qr for the sucssnful operation of a single store. The five cities under


ii ...... ." ..


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Number


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tble I4.

PanwTI, AMD n1 SnOm OF It


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Polt. : o on : laber of V Number
Cities : : Storen : Peop i
M. 1920 : 1921*3 :er Stor


M~l lauloe ... ........*
Ift ling.. l .. .......
*&loan ................
Green Bay ............
hku Claire .............


457.147 : 507
56.593 : 70
3,378 : 29
31,017 : 25
ao,906 i 19


902
637.
1323
11002
],M0


fpcludes 15 stores which were mbers of c)mhain store qyats ,
but not included in the rest of this st .'y.
*LAW


IZL&TIOC1 O 8IT TO COT


The larger stores In thli group do not In general operate with-.& *-
lower percentage of total expense. Analysls of kble No, 6 shows thti *i ;
high-expense stores are distributed, rather evenly throughout the ot, .ii*
range. Chart 1 displays graphically that there Is no evident relation U-
tween volume of alms and low expense percentage. '..|

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.:" : : ;... : *" : :' -.
,t .. ::. ..

0 ...... .. .... ... .. i .. I. ...


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1 0
--(-~~ ~ ~ 9 ----- ---- -- -- ---------.-*.





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represent t C I o .IL
left represented the store with the smallest volume orf sales (i.e. Store Jo. 6,. Table 6). Ba-
are at represents the store with the vlsmal of les: the further the bar is tore o. 64. Table 6). arsr
are arranged according to the volume of sales; the further the bar is to the ri~ht. the larqpr
the sales. The last bar to the right, therefore, rdetncnte store No. 1. Table 6). "
m ... .. n ....-


S


It..


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the stores making apparently the fullest utiliUatio of labor 9brO.,
achieved & record. of $6.53. Ther, is it es-wt rem]lw itfsa is
ratio until we reach the point of stores bvynlg ales of $3,000 er
week, we there is a drop of something less thben a dollar.

Table 5.

ODRILT BALES FM DWLOT
(By Stores' Volume of tes)


Average : Amount of tlesl
ales per hour
ver Week M er &bMlone

$ 100- 250 $1.95
250o 500 3.19
500 1.000 1 -Q


. .


1,000 2,000 5.32
2,000 3,000 6.8
Over 3, 000 : 5.96
______
s ". iis


M-LATIO OF VOLUM OF SALE TO NET niCS *io
Examination of Table 6 shows that there to little relation b :S4.::
volume of sales and percentage of net income to sales. Of the 64 st.f.lu 1
emmined. 50 per cent had yearly sales greater then $39,000. Of the 6 +
stores, 27 showed a net loss when charged with all expenses, incluitin S*.
ary, rent, and interest on investment. Of these 27, 13 were in the '.
having sales over $39,000. This shows that store which lost money ark W1i
distributed throughout this group with respect to @ales.

In this group of stores, apparently, volume of sales In itself &L4
not contribute to profitable operation and the dealer not askie & profit
must certainly look beyond the total amount of sales to detemie wherelins
the difficulty lies.

OPERATING DPEDSE8
The detail s of the individual store coats are giv In tables 6, 7.
& and 9. The figures in Table 7 show the details of the itemse includltd n
Table 6, under agesi and Salaries," and similar details for lICeLlaaeoaus


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ri


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*imillar line of busaiaes a.


ZAtS ..tee -f OWn as ervics of members of the
bully working in the store, except as office help.
il!""!!^! .. j^ g.... 1f
.................... .:. i .. ".,
t ta fotr clerical, bookkeeping or stenographic service
actually paid. Estimated value o." such services if
petfrid by any member of the family without compen-



buat actually paid for store site and building.
:'+I sti.ated rental value of the buildit aud site in case
Ti:"::! the proprietor owned the premises.


Interest actually paid on borrowed money.

Interest on net investment at 6 per cent. The amount used in
Scepating this amount should not include investment in land
Ma bui lidngs.
N tr'centaws are computed by dividing the amount of each Item of expense by
+ a th moiat of the total ales.
i .... estiOmates were largely those of the individual dealer as to the going
j|:. a4 for mat cutters. Every effort as made to keep these estimates at
& semroative figure.
:, UIW larly on estates of the dealer.
L... an o estimtes by dealer and some verification by Bureau' a accountants.























sea. List ad Power a
+ ::..iiiii i:
hab, elactricity and power, excepting power ube for
refrigeratltac.;
HI:.m~.
Shop Ezpenses

Repairs, exclu.iling thorn to ice machim a. bum 2A .. *

IauAry

Ml moellaneous mapplie a except wrapping and office nap44rft.
i.
Insurance on .tock and fixtures, bt

Office Expense

Office s.pplies





BadiaDebts
oicerol aouals office epens::: l s

depreciation

On eqaipeunt at fixtwes1 but not on building or Ineliuery H
equipment. "
.4Debt,,s+ii




To cover actual and estimated. losses^
AdeTio g J SD .lim
..,,,,,,




ktial expense incurred "
j::::

















Golitt!t!!pL ito
S... All otkar expense not classified above except delivery expense




Auato expeam
eS At& Cars of horas
Depreciation on delivery squlprmnt
Miscellaneous delivery expense.

j Stable or garage expense

*IU S OF EJTWSE CCTgAPED IN IMPORTANCE
qWa0es an. alartes" is a larger item of expense than a11 other ex-
pnss p ambined. (See Chart 2). Rent, on the average, is next in size, and
I| s a Important as any other tao itewii, of expense combined, (except &"Wages
1ic acd Slaries'). Reductions in operating expenes percentages are, then, of
pgm1 reter importance in these larger ites of expense and these items should
S be. more closely watched. A loss to the ousinermse nay creep in more easily
bI, expeaditres for wages or salary than in any other way. Charts 4 ast 5
sow tU expense of individual stores and offer a ready way of comparing the
expense of one store with another. By compattng the percentages as suggested
previously and making comparison wtta this chart, the items in which savings
my be effected will stand out.
It is sigificant to notice that a saving of 1% in wages and salar-
ies Is more effective in increasing profits than:-
A 15i% ving in wrapping material;
An 11A saving in. icoe and refrigeration;
A b saving in -ent.




















Interest at
shop ExpeneM
Wrappings
Depreciation
leat. LIU t&
r
Office Expensea
Advertising
Bad Debts
All.other
expense 0


The average expense percentages for the o4 stores from which a&M.0int
accounting data were secured are presented above. Simple arithmsti S
ages were used.

ItPORTANCE OF WAGE A1D SALARY EXPENSE

Wages and Salaries, (including office wages but not aelle.rtry::pt)... l:
in the stores amnalyzed constitute nearly sixty per cent of the total 0
Of the 27 stores that showed a loss, all but 5 had a "Wages and. SalaNSO'
expense that was greater than the average of the stores .vhlih oade & .. t.. ..
The size of this item of expense, in practically every ,, -waia"Sn I i..
factor in the net loss. Chart 3 compares the average of the growp of"::rt~n
that made a profit with the average of those that showed aIos. The Mats 2|
ence in total expense between the profit group and. the loss group Is &ibt: 7,:|||l
six per cent for non-delivery stores and about four per cent for dellvOny !
stores. In both groups this difference is largely in Wages and Salaries. ,
While an over-supply of sales help may frequently ce the cause of the higA h
wages cost, in these data the estimated salary allowed the proprietor shouv i
be recognized as an important contributing factor In the results hown.

The method of ascertaining the amount that should be charged apinst '
the business as salary for the owner was to estimate how uch he could prob- .
ably earn working for some one else in a similar line of business. Obvioul,::
if his own business will not pay this amount in salary and somo thing addl-
tional to compensate for the risk and the worry in connection with operating "
the stcre, he is not in as favorable a position, financially, as thou&i he
worried for someone else.


H'














I* Awsn Staie4uealyuls of the exUat to which excessive Wages an
biarles expense contributed to & net loss my be made frIm Charts U arA 5.


Chart 3.


4 1|p?. i" : : i ".. : xEE"
:iteb... Uv... Stor..:

iii~i:ta :......
lii : ,,:



S liUvery Stores
p ..... .. : ... .
* nrotiiat ores


ii~~Ls :: sStores

7E ".
"61


IP.... ITA OF W .AGS AND AL AMIES


Per cent of Total Sales.
in Q4


n


lIrages and Salaries


I The Total Expense of the non-delivery stores which lost money ex-
c, CeedSe the Total Expense of the non-delivery stores which showed a profit
b1 about six per cent; five per cent being directly attributed to Wages
and Salary expense.

In the case of the delivery group the stores which lost money aver-
aged about four per cent greater Total Exjpense than the stores which made
miay. About half this difference is directly attributed to Wages art Sal-
aries.


Rent is the item of expense next in size to Wages arnd Salaries 'See
Charts 4 &rnd 5 and Table b). It varies froa less than 1 per cent of total
"'ales to over 4 per cent. The average of the stores that made a profit com-
pared with the average of the stores tat showed a loss indicated that the
high rent stores are not generally the most prosperous. In fact, high rent


/


All other Expenses


WOU4091A


IMMINIZ112=0


r/w,/
W////, / 0/, R/Off/F/Ky
.0 *N
IVIVM,141111111 0/0, "


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WLL PPIN". 1*12". l.lE. ETC.
Wrappings expense varied from 0.26 to 1.75 of total sals a
6). The range of this expense for iandivldual stores is bom In GChlKU::.i|..
5. Peculiar eand usual coniltIons no doubt are responsible or teb
and the lowest percentages, but those toward the middle representl .th ...
that the more typical stones expemnd for thele it. If wrapping ...
larger than the center item of the group, It Is well to determine th
and decide whether the money spent in this way brings retuna iftlb W
lor sample, a particular dealer may wrap the meat l an a xceptenay
paper, tied with a ,string of extra strength. The atisfaction -AS -mfl.
of customers, as Indicated, possibly by continued patronage, wouldU nu'b||
ales for the slightly higher cost of the stronger papersand twi., .

H8 LOSSES MAY NEfU .... jRX
The two obvious ways to increase profits are to reduce'en eNAM *l iiI:
increase salesI.. **
.. .... ..i
Possibly the effort to reduce wages expense in a one or two-fM sbhOillp.
would result in little saving. In most cases the ntnber of meat cutters m'.:
employed to handle the rush hour volume of trade, even though at other Was'AIlN.
their services are not fully utilized. The idle time is a direct cost to |....
store, for which there is no direct sales return. If sales can be nelx 1.rAiiiPit
the expense of their wages would be distributed over a larger amount o. 4a"Rll
and the loss might be turned into a net profit.
It does not follow that a high "Wages and BslaUry" expense nceerl3"
mans a loss to the owner. One of the most prosperous stores bad a VTry Mfai
labor expense, but it is noticeable, from a study of Table 6, that higk uWsss
expense is generally associated with a nat loses, (See Charte 4 ad 5). aI
the final analysis, each store must be stud wdied i vidually, as particular I
conditions surrounding it my or my not warrant an expense that is out of
line with the average.
Certain expenses, as has been pointed out before, my be warranted
under particular conditions. A store proprietor may find that his customers. "
desire special services and that he is warranted in Incurring more than the .
usual expense. In the final analysis, business Judgment backed by coquplete 11'
Information must decide whether or not the results warrant the expenditure.




__ :
























IVa p e of stores aa than aalye each average.

Sbeame of the additional pens of delivering, the Total Expense of
pa4:-q- of stores which deliver cannot correctly be compared with the Total
bwan of a SvoQ of stores which do not deliver. The 64 stores from Wtch
8 mtaRte assisting data were ssaured were divided into two classes accord-
H to d)other or not delivery service ias rendered. Each of thene two
*il glaseas of store em aIin divided into two groups according to whether or
t, the stores showed a net profit for the year.

'" Chart 4 presents the non-delivery stores
III, Chart 5 presents the delivery stores.

l'i ....tal expense for both the profit ad the loss stores is shown by the
b',. e heavy bars on the left of each chart. In each chart the bar on the ex-
Utlam left Is the average total expense of the profit stores within that
VO .; ti bar adjacent to it is the average Total Expense of the stores
which showed a loss. Each bar of Total Expense is made of Wages and. Wlar-
Leas, Rent, Ice and Refrligeratlon, Miscellaneous, Wrappings, Shop Expense,
6at, Light aS Power, Interest, and Delivery Expense in the case of the
proup of delivery stores.

ach item of expense is further analyzed In the sam chart. akeD for
example, lages aad salaries. The solid blacso portion of the large oars rep-
resents Uspes and balaries. The length of this bar is determined. by the av-
*exo of the Wages and Slary Expense as shown to the right of the big bars.
The data used in the average are also presented:--the small black bars show
the expense of each inAividual store. The number at the bottom of each bar
ti the store amber aad is the ase &s used in Tables t, 7, 6 and 9.

Tbe other Items of expense are presented in a similar manner. The
IndivIdal stores are represented by mall brs the average is the larger
Saded bar and this average is the one used in the Total Expense bars at the
left of each chart.



















































**- .....:;. +*,j Jy.!:;.:lte;

* ..- .
i C ii

: n. : n:- n ::" ":n .. ..

... ....^ -1t
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..: ..
,,,.:; +. : +
... ... M <;:1t,














Chart 4.




EXPt'E.NSES OF 2 -N'oV-I)E.l I'ER V STOHl.,


r _______o__ CIMo V
r- YUY&L Salkm
mom ~~LOSS ^ *
I WD L060gtW


- -= 9im. LQI ll sI'm .a 1 .. **. ... ..i
AVERAC. WAGES &SALARIES RENT
ECXPWCNSC S.- trz ro. A h-a .,,,, ",., -r


Thi 1 1 lul 1 o1 s l t it r, ii tt Il lo 2 ,III t'rl iliI
Ttil Ezx nii .i, I i rh'I ., -/, 'i 'li io, /t ll'iiimliJ to T rot l
Ex ,re'n, ;, ivi',il/!tiid in ]#lisliI. /if lerl ,uit I Jr/i/tiiiti,,l i (P*ifi1'
oni the 0'<"t' -ing I[nyr.


mmser r
TOTraL aft




.... ... ... ..






XPENS OF


M10A_ __ GA94- -- FOTA
Apf ............_ .^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ ....^



71










IRPI; HET LIHT LIV[ R
1 0








H 3 1 1 I w[i!i[iAis

Jnor.1 l5TOMll us's_ %__9 PRO slot_ M1 *O- u%(-*a



L11
S.!








INTRES IC,&RFRGRTO
20













mw toww ..... ** i.. .. ** > .. ** *.* i.
at,










AEPWAG&SA I ENT SA EXPS MPEOUS
EXPENSES, bCE. h bRE,'" f, IEAf






,r), ftr t J) t. I /'I ,em -ex i To Each 1$nt o/ rxpefor fo* -*ir to
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69.61:
78.21:
79.91:
80.53:
76.72:
66.81:


31.39:
20.68.
19.70:
30.39:
21.79:
20.09:
19.47:
23.251
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14.69:
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I1scOSIB MILTSS 1921

Anual Sales :o. of :Cot of:GroGS : lt : !t b ?
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25.000-50.000 :28 : 77.45 :22.55: 1. 00 a.. .:
50.000-100.000 18 78.18 .216: 1.34:L.
Over 100,000 3 :77.33 22.6: S
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