Ahold beats expectations on better sales, rising margin

Ahold profit margin increases to 3.8 percent

Ahold, the operator of supermarkets in the United States and Netherlands, reported on Wednesday first-quarter earnings that beat analyst expectations, with underlying operating profits of 449 million euros ($499 million).

Analysts polled for Reuters had forecast underlying operating income of 430 million euros, up 10 percent from 390 million in the first quarter of 2015.

Ahold continuing positive earnings momentum: Rabobank

Sales rose 3.5 percent at constant exchange rates to 11.8 billion euros with an underlying profit margin of 3.8 percent, up from 3.5 percent in the same period a year earlier.