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Australia's Coles first-half profit jumps nearly 15%

Feb 17 (Reuters) - Australia’s Coles Group Ltd reported a 14.5% rise in half-year profit on Wednesday, as coronavirus lockdowns boosted demand for household essentials and drove sales at the country’s second largest supermarket chain.

Net profit after tax for the 27 weeks to Jan. 3 was A$560 million ($434.45 million), up from A$489 million a year ago, the company said. ($1 = 1.2890 Australian dollars) (Reporting by Sameer Manekar and Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

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