Supervalu Inc has reported record earnings for its second quarter, the retail company said today, despite a fall in net sales for the period.

The company reported second quarter net sales of US$10.2 billion compared to $10.7 billion last year. Net earnings of $148m compared to $132m in the same period last year, an increase of 12%.

Diluted earnings per share reached $0.69 compared to $0.61 last year, an increase of 13%.

The company said that its second quarter of fiscal 2008 included 12 weeks of combined results compared to the second quarter of fiscal 2007 which included 13 weeks of acquired operations.

The estimated sales impact of one less week of acquired operations in the second quarter of fiscal 2008 is approximately $450m.

Jeff Noddle, chairman and chief executive officer said: "Through the first half of fiscal 2008, we are on track, delivering the fifth consecutive quarter of double-digit earnings per share growth on the heels of our record-setting results during fiscal 2007. In year two of our three-year journey, we are implementing programs to improve our long-term sales performance and deliver our synergies, while operating our business from day-to-day. I am pleased to affirm our fiscal 2008 earnings guidance today, which represents another year of double-digit earnings per share growth."

Looking forward, the company affirmed its fiscal 2008 guidance of reported diluted earnings per share between $2.73 and $2.83.