Last updated: February 19. 2013 5:29PM - 138 Views

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(AP) Royal Ahold NV, the Dutch operator of the U.S. Stop & Shop and Giant supermarket chains, says third quarter earnings fell sharply due to higher tax costs.

In its biggest market, the U.S., Ahold's like-for-like sales excluding gasoline fell 1.5 percent to $5.9 billion and margins declined, but the company said it won market share.

Without providing detail, Ahold said, We achieved market share gains in both the supermarket and all outlets channel.

Third quarter net profit was 139 million ($177 million), down from 257 million, hurt this year by a one-time tax charge and boosted in the same period last year by a one-time tax gain.

Operating profit fell 3.7 percent to 289 million, and sales rose 2 percent to 7.0 billion.

Associated Press
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