Unilever sales beat estimates after price hikes

STORY: Unilever smashed quarterly sales forecasts on Thursday (April 27).

The maker of Ben & Jerry's ice cream and Dove soap profited as volumes only fell slightly after the firm raised prices by a tenth.

Packaged goods companies have started to charge more due to high inflation.

But consumers have coped with the cost-of-living squeeze better than many analysts had expected.

Though some still warn companies could eventually take a hit to margins as more shoppers move to cheaper brands.

Unilever reported a 10.5% rise in underlying first-quarter sales to $16.4 billion, well beyond expectations.

Looking ahead, the firm said price hikes would slow down over upcoming quarters.

Unilever isn't the only major conglomerate to report better than expected sales in the quarter.

Swiss rival Nestle also outperformed with price hikes offsetting lower volumes.

Investors liked what they heard from Unilever on Thursday..

The firm's shares were up around 2% by mid-afternoon.