Kroger profit rises 3.4 percent

September 16, 2008 8:38:12 AM PDT
Kroger Co., the nation's largest traditional grocery chain, says its second-quarter profit rose 3.4 percent on strong sales growth.Net income for the three months ended Aug. 16 was $276.5 million, or 42 cents per share, up from $267.3 million, or 38 cents per share, a year earlier.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expected earnings of 41 cents per share on revenue of $17.63 billion. Kroger reported second-quarter revenue of $18.1 billion, up nearly 12 percent.

The company says sales at stores open at least five quarters, considered a key indicator of a retailer's strength, rose 4.7 percent excluding fuel, and 9.7 percent including fuel sales for the quarter.

Kroger confirmed its fiscal year 2008 earnings guidance of $1.85 to $1.90 per share. Analysts are expecting $1.92 a share.