LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Papa John’s closed out a tough year on a weak note but says it expects improvement in 2019.The Louisville, Kentucky-based pizza chain said Tuesday that sales at established locations in North America dropped 8 per cent in the fourth quarter compared to the same period a year ago. International same-store sales were down 3 per cent.But it says it’s confident it can stem those losses this year with new products and menu changes.Papa John’s lost $14 million, or 44 cents per share, in the fourth quarter.Excluding one-time items, the company earned 15 cents per share. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected 17 cents a share.Papa John’s said its fourth-quarter revenue fell 20 per cent to $374 million. That was also lower than Wall Street forecasts.The Associated Press

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