Consumer goods company The Clorox Co. said Wednesday it had net income of $172 million, or $1.31 a share, in its fiscal third quarter to March 31, up from $162 million, or $1.23 a share, in the year-earlier period. Sales rose to $1.48 billion from $1.43 billion. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of $1.30 and sales of $1.48 billion. Earnings "were driven primarily by higher sales, a lower effective tax rate and a gain from the sale of an international facility as part of the international business' Go Lean strategy, partially offset by significantly higher advertising and trade promotion investments behind product innovation, as well as lower gross margin," the company said in a statement. Clorox is now expecting fiscal 2017 sales growth of 3% to 4%, and EPS of $5.25 to $5.35, compared with a prior range of $5.23 to $5.38. Shares were not yet active premarket, but are up 8.4% in 2017, while the S&P 500 has gained 6.8%.
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