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Lorillard sales rise on higher pricing | MarketWatch

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Lorillard Inc., awaiting approval for its merger with Reynolds American Inc., said sales edged up 1.4% in its fourth quarter as higher pricing offset lower cigarette volume.

The Newport maker said its cigarette sales grew 2.4% in the most recent period, despite a 0.9% drop in wholesale cigarette unit volume.

Lorillard is in the midst of a $25 billion deal to be bought by Reynolds American. Both companies’ shareholders have approved the deal, though the Federal Trade Commission’s review is continuing. The merger comes as cigarette demand is falling and many smokers are turning toward electronic cigarettes.

Lorillard’s Blu, among the leading e-cigarette brands, is marked to be divested in the Reynolds deal. In the latest quarter, sales in the e-cigarette business fell 28% to $39 million as competitors rolled out new products and promotions.

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Lorillard sales rise on higher pricing.

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