By Scott Kanowsky
Investing.com -- H & M Hennes & Mauritz AB B (ST: HMb ) has seen its outlook raised by analysts again after the fast fashion giant posted a better-than-expected profit in the first quarter.
Analysts at Morgan Stanley bumped up their rating to equal-weight from underweight, citing margin improvements at the Swedish firm that helped offset weaker top-line growth.
It marks the latest in a series of upgrades for H&M, with analysts at Danske Bank and Credit Suisse (SIX: CSGN ) also recently lifting their respective ratings of the stock.
Shares in the company edged higher in early European trading on Wednesday.
Last week, H&M reported a surprise income for the three months ended on February 28 of SEK 725 million (SEK 1 = $0.0973). Bloomberg estimates had seen the figure slumping to a loss of SEK 1.03B.
Quarterly gross margin of 47.2% dipped versus the first quarter of 2022 due to elevated purchasing costs and a strong U.S. dollar, although it still topped projections of 45.8%.
Meanwhile, sales moved up by 3% year-on-year on a local currency basis to SEK 54.87B, but the uptick was below Bloomberg forecasts of 4.21%.
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