Wal-Mart Beats On Q4 Earnings; Revenue Lags

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT) is a multinational retailer that runs large department stores and warehouse store chains. The company has more than 11,000 stores in 26 countries.

Like many retailers, Wal-Mart’s comparable store sales have been declining in U.S. over the last six quarters as a result of weak spending by lower- and middle-income segment consumers. Medical cost inflation and increased health care enrollments in the U.S. have also increased health care costs of the company. Also, huge investments in the e-commerce business in order to compete with other online retailers have added to Wal-Mart’s. Due to this, investors have been eagerly awaiting the company’s latest earnings report.

This is especially true given the recent earnings estimate revisions for WMT as the consensus estimate has been going slightly lower. Further, WMT has a mixed earnings history. WMT has delivered positive earnings surprise in two of the last four quarters, negative surprise in one quarter, and in-line estimates in another quarter, making for an average surprise of 0.39%.

Currently, WMT has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold), but that could definitely change following Wal-Mart’s earnings report which was just released. We have highlighted some of the key stats from this just-revealed announcement below:

Earnings:  WMT posted earnings of $1.61 per share, better than our consensus of $1.54 per share. Investors should note that these figures take out stock option expenses.

Revenue: WMT posted revenues of $131.6 billion. This missed our consensus estimate of $132.2 billion.

Key Stats to Note: Walmart U.S. comparable store sales increased 1.5% in the fourth quarter, while it increased 2% at the Sam’s Club, without the impact of fuel.

Stock Price: Shares were down 0.35% ahead of the report.

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Author: Travis Esquivel

Travis Esquivel is an engineer, passionate soccer player and full-time dad. He enjoys writing about innovation and technology from time to time.

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