Clorox stock surges after profit, sales rise well above expectations

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Shares of Clorox Co. surged 2.3% in premarket trading Monday, after the provider of home cleaning and care and health and wellness products reported a fiscal first-quarter profit that was well above expectations, amid strong sales growth due to the COVID-19 pandemic and as people spend more time at home. Net income for the quarter to Sept. 30 grew to $415 million, or $3.22 a share, from $203 million, or $1.59 a share, in the year-ago period. The FactSet consensus for earnings per share was $2.32. Sales increased 27.2% to $1.92 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $1.76 billion, as sales of its household products (bags and wraps, grilling and cat litter) jumped 39% and sales of health and wellness products (cleaning, professional products, vitamins and minerals and supplements) rose 28%. For fiscal 2021, Clorox expects EPS of $7.70 to $7.95 and sales growth of 5% to 9%. The FactSet EPS consensus is $7.72 and the sales consensus of $6.94 billion implies 3.3% growth. The stock has rallied 35.0% year to date through Friday, while the SPDR Consumer Staples Select Sector ETF has lost 1.1% and the S&P 500 has gained 1.2%.
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