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Cost of data breach still taking toll on Target earnings

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The massive data breach that Target weathered in December continues to be a drag on the company's bottom line.

MPR News said that Target reports a big financial hit related to the theft, first reported over the holidays. The company told its investors that breach-related costs will reach $148 million in the second quarter. Most of that will be spent to address breach-related claims, including those from payment card networks. Target's insurance will cover one quarter of that amount.

The Associated Press noted that Target stock fell 4 percent at the start of trading after the company lowered its second-quarter earnings forecast. The Business Journal notes that Target's stock was trading just under $59 a share Tuesday morning. A year ago, Target's stock was trading at $72 a share.

The Star Tribune reports that the Minneapolis-based discounter noted that comparable sales in its U.S. stores were “essentially flat” during the May-to-July quarter, with profitability cut by discounts to match competitors. At the same time, Target's Canadian stores, which have been losing money since its entry there last year, also experienced “softer than expected” sales; profit there was hurt by slashing prices to clear out inventory.

Here's Target's press release on its second quarter financial report.

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