Kroger easily beat profit expectations for its latest quarter, but didn’t boost its estimates for full-year earnings.
(ticker: KR) said Thursday it expects earnings for the fiscal year ending in January to range from $4.45 to $4.60 a share, matching the guidance the grocer issued in March. At the midpoint—$4.52 a share—the earnings outlook slightly missed analysts’ expectations of $4.54 a share.
Investors were likely left wanting more as the grocer has persistently raised its annual earnings guidance in previous quarters. For instance,
raised profit expectations for fiscal 2022 when it reported results last June, September and December.
The stock slide 3.8% shortly after the market open Thursday to $45.43.
The grocer reported fiscal first-quarter earnings of $1.51 a share, ahead of the $1.46 a share analysts tracked by FactSet were expecting. Sales of $45.2 billion for the quarter ended in April narrowly missed expectations of $45.3 billion. Same-store sales in the period were 3.5%, higher than forecasts for 3.4%.
Retailers with a heavier concentration of essential items are benefiting from steady consumer demand, as elevated inflation has left shoppers with less cash for discretionary items. Lower-income shoppers, in particular, are pulling back on nonessential purchases in response to a slowing macroeconomic environment, as evidenced by recent earnings from Target (TGT) and
Kroger will be holding a conference call at 10 a.m. ET. Beyond the financials, investors will be looking for commentary on Kroger’s merger with fellow grocer Albertsons (ACI). The deal, announced in October, remains under regulatory review.
Write to Karishma Vanjani at email@example.com
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