Supervalu's 4Q Results, Upbeat View Send Shares Soaring

By Matt Egan Retail FOXBusiness

Supervalu (SVU) beat the Street and unveiled surprisingly solid guidance for the new fiscal year on Tuesday, sending the grocery store operator’s beaten-down stock soaring about 10%.

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The parent of Save-A-Lot and Albertson’s said it lost $424 million, or $2.00 a share, last quarter, compared with a profit of $95 million, or 44 cents a share, a year earlier. Excluding one-time items, it earned 38 cents a share, topping forecasts from analysts for 35 cents.

Supervalu said its sales slipped 5% to $8.23 billion, trailing the Street’s view of $8.31 billion.

Shareholders breathed a sigh of relief as the company projected full-year EPS of $1.27 to $1.42. Even the conservative end of that range would top estimate for just $1.19.

Eden Prairie, Minn.-based Supervalu also said it expects sales of $35 billion to $35.5 billion, which is in line with the Street’s view of $35.28 billion. Excluding fuel, same-store sales are expected to improve to a decline of 1% to 2%.

“Our disciplined approach to pre-funding price investments is allowing us to invest across markets, categories and items,” CEO Craig Herkert said in a statement.

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Shares of Supervalu were recently up 9.77% to $5.81, easing the 2012 tumble of 34%.

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