US value retailer Dollar General has upped its full-year earnings forecast on the back of a 57% increase in first-half profits.

For the 26-week period, the company earned US$277.2m, an increase of $100.6m on the prior year.

The firm’s operating profit rate was 9.4% of sales, reaching $591.5m from $458.1m in the comparable period last year.

Total sales climbed 11.3% to $6.32bn, including a 5.9% increase in same-store sales.

Dollar General increased its expectation for fiscal 2010 adjusted diluted earnings per share to a range of $1.68 to $1.74. Previous guidance was for adjusted earnings of $1.62 to $1.69 per diluted share. Sales are expected to increase 8.5%. Adjusted operating profit is expected to increase 20 to 23% over full year 2009.

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