July 10, 2020 / 7:03 AM / a month ago

UPDATE 1-Finnish top retailer Kesko raises 2020 profit outlook

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July 10 (Reuters) - Finland’s top retailer Kesko on Friday raised its 2020 outlook, saying sales had been better than expected in its building and technical trade as well as in groceries despite the new coronavirus pandemic.

Kesko said it now estimates its comparable operating profit from continuing operations of 430 million to 510 million euros ($484 million-$574 million) versus an earlier estimate of 400-450 million.

Kesko said its second-quarter operating profit grew 24% from a year ago to 155 million euros, with sales up 1% at 2.8 billion euros.

“Consumer sales have developed better than anticipated during the exceptional circumstances surrounding the epidemic,” it said.

“Retail sales for all the grocery trade chains have developed better than anticipated, compensating for the decrease in sales in the food service business,” Kesko said.

$1 = 0.8878 euros Reporting by Tarmo Virki in Tallinn; editing by Jason Neely

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