Kroger’s Q1 Sales Gains Buck Trend

Kroger’s Q1 Sales Gains Buck Trend

CINCINNATI — Kroger Co. last week surprised observers by posting quarterly earnings that exceeded Wall Street estimates, saying a focus on cost controls and sales growth despite moderating inflation sparked the upside.

The retailer here summarily increased its earnings guidance for the year, and said it had authorized a $1 billion stock buyback.

Net earnings of $439.4 million, or 78 cents a

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