Shares of Colgate-Palmolive Co. surged 1.6% in morning trading Friday, on the heels of the oral, personal and home care company’s first-quarter report, in which profit and sales beat expectations. Total sales rose 6.0%, while the cost of sales grew 4.6%. On the post-earnings conference call with analysts, Chief Executive Noel Wallace said the company was “battling the cost inflation across the board,” according to a FactSet transcript, and he didn’t expect those headwinds to abate any time soon. He said pricing was an important element of growth, as is cost management. Overall pricing increased 4.5%, including a rise of 5.5% in North America. In comparison, the U.S. personal consumption expenditure price index rose 0.5% in March, which pushed headline inflation up 2.3% over the past year. The stock has lost 5.2% year to date, while the SPDR Consumer Staples Select Sector ETF has edged up 3.0% and the S&P 500 has gained 11.4%.

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