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Whole Foods’ 1Q profit up 8 pct

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NEW YORK (AP) — Whole Foods says its fiscal first-quarter profit rose 8 percent, but results were below Wall Street expectations amid a sales shortfall due to increased competition.

The grocer is also lowering its earnings projection for the year.

The Austin, Texas-based grocery chain says it earned a profit of $158 million, or 42 cents per share, in the quarter ended Jan. 19. That compares with a profit of $146 million, or 39 cents per share, in the year-ago period.

Revenue rose 10 percent to $4.24 billion in the quarter.

Analysts expected 44 cents per share on revenue of $4.29 billion, according to FactSet estimates.

Revenue at stores opened at least a year rose 5.4 percent. Analysts were expecting a 5.6 percent gain.

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