By  on August 1, 2008

Drugstore and restaurant chains were the fastest-growing retailers last year, according to the National Retail Federation’s “Hot 100” list. Apparel ranked fifth.

The trade organization said two drugstore giants, bolstered by acquisitions, were the top merchants. CVS Caremark, which operates the CVS chain and for a year has been running the prescription benefits manager Caremark Rx, grew 74.2 percent. Rite Aid, which purchased Brooks Pharmacy units in New England and Eckerd on the East Coast, reported that revenues increased 39.8 percent.

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