Kroger Co. shares rose 3% in premarket trade, after the supermarket chain beat fiscal third-quarter profit and sales estimates and raised its outlook for the full year. Kroger said it had net income of $362 million, or 73 cents a share, for the quarter, up from $299 million, or 57 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Excluding a special charge, per-share earnings came to 69 cents, well ahead of the FactSet consensus of 61 cents. Sales rose 11.2% to $25 billion, ahead of the FactSet consensus of $24.8 billion. The company raised its full-year outlook to $3.32 to $3.36 from a prior range of $3.22 to $3.28. For fiscal 2015, the company is expecting earnings growth to come in at the low end of its 8% to 11% range, as it will exclude tax benefits and charges that will be included in the 2014 earnings. Shares have gained 48% in the year so far, while the S&P 500 has gained 12%.
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