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Target Q1 beats estimates, raises forecast


Minneapolis -- Target Corp. reported a better-than-expected 1.2% increase in first-quarter profit as warm weather and an early Easter helped drive sales. The chain also raised its earnings forecast for the full year.

Target’s net earnings for the quarter ended April 28 were $697 million, compared with $689 million in the year-ago period.

“We’re very pleased with our first-quarter earnings, which benefited from better-than-expected sales,” Gregg Steinhafel, Target’s CEO, said in a statement.

Sales increased 6.1% in the first quarter to $16.5 billion in 2012, from $15.6 billion in 2011. Same-store sales rose 5.3%.

“While our outlook for the remainder of the 2012 reflects continued economic uncertainty, we are confident in our strategy,” Steinhafel said.

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