The company reported that total sales were $304.9 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2009, an increase of 4.1% over total sales of $293 million for the same quarter last year. Retail sales for the quarter ended June 28, 2008 were $294.7 million, up 4.2% from retail sales of $282.9 million for the same quarter last year. During the first quarter ended June 28, 2008, the company opened eight stores, including five in California, two in Texas and one in Arizona. As of June 28, 2008, the company had 273 stores, up 7.9%, compared to 253 stores as of June 30, 2007. Eric Schiffer, CEO of 99 Cents Only Stores, said: "The trend in our sales performance in the first quarter was essentially in line with our expectations. As we discussed on our fourth quarter conference call, first quarter comparable store sales were challenging due to the Easter shift and the relatively difficult comparison from the first quarter last year, when our same-store sales increased by 5.2%. "Excluding the first two weeks of the quarter which were impacted by Easter sales, our same-store sales for the remainder of the quarter were 1.7%, slightly stronger than the positive 1.5% comp we experienced in the fourth quarter of 2008. Although sales did not strengthen quite enough to meet our projection of approximately flat sales for the quarter, we are pleased with the positive trend in our transactions."