by Christopher Freeburn | May 8, 2013 9:35 am
Shares of Whole Foods Market (NYSE:WFM) surged almost 8% in Wednesday morning trading after the company announced that it will double its share count by the end of the month.
The high-end grocery chain said that its board has cleared a 2-for-1 stock split that would raise the number of its outstanding shares to 370 million. The split will be effective on May 30. Under terms of the split, shareholders of record on May 17, will receive a dividend of one new share for each share they hold, the Associated Press noted.
The company also reported that it earned $142 million during its second fiscal quarter, up from $118 million in the same period last year. EPS came in at 76 cents, topping analysts’ forecast of 73 cents a share.
Sales climbed 13% to $3.03 billion for the quarter, but that narrowly missed the $3.04 billion that Wall Street was looking for.
Whole Foods said it plans to launch 32 new stores during this fiscal year. It also projects opening between 33 and 34 new stores in fiscal 2014.
In March, Whole Foods became the first supermarket in the U.S. to require the labeling of all foods containing genetically modified ingredients.
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