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Most of Japan's big retailers eyeing higher profits this fiscal year

More shoppers on the lookout for value, not just price

A customer checks out the goods at a Seven-Eleven convenience store in Amagasaki, Japan.

TOKYO -- Net profit is on a growth track at 43 of 57 major Japanese retailers this fiscal year as stores lure choosy shoppers by supplementing bargains with products that cost more but offer added value, such as health benefits and increased safety.

Overall net profit declined 3% at the 57 retailers that had reported by Wednesday their results for the year ended February. But their projections for the current year show a solid 26% increase. A third of the major retailers expect record profits.

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