Nordstrom

(JWN) - Get Report

posted a huge jump in first-quarter earnings Thursday, blowing away analysts' estimates, as the demand for luxury items increased substantially since last year.

The company also said second-quarter and full-year results would beat analysts' estimates, helping send its shares up 48 cents, or 1.3%, to $37.71 in after-hours trading.

The upscale retailer said profit rose to $68.7 million, or 48 cents a share, from $27.2 million, or 20 cents a share, a year earlier. The latest quarter's results included 8 cents a share of interest expense related to retirement of debt during the quarter.

Analysts had been expecting the company to earn 43 cents a share in the first quarter.

Sales jumped 16.6% to $1.5 billion while same-store sales were up 13.2%.

The company had a 320-basis-point increase in gross margin, helped by solid sell-through and lower markdowns. Additionally, general expenses decreased 180 basis points.

Second-quarter earnings are expected to be at 70 cents to 74 cents a share, Nordstrom said, above the Wall Street consensus for 67 cents a share and the prior year's earnings of 43 cents a share. The company expects same-store sales to rise 4% to 6%.

For the full year, the Seattle-based company sees a profit of $2.42 to $2.46 a share, again ahead of the consensus estimate for $2.34 a share and last year's profit of $1.76 a share. The company anticipates a same-store sales increase of 4% to 6%.

Shares of Nordstrom closed down 3 cents, or 0.1%, at $37.23 in regular trading Thursday on the

New York Stock Exchange

.