Wal-Mart Stores: We’re on an Upward Trend

Back in 2007 (while the market was still “forecasting” rosy times) and first half 2008, the stock of Walmart (NYSE:WMT) really took off.  This was part of our ‘pooring of America’ theme, as I opined the U.S. consumer was finally going to take a massive hit without the house ATM to rely on.  Let’s not read ‘too much’ into it yet, but Walmart is out this morning with a quite positive business review – and the stock seems to be breaking out.  If the Main Street economy is improving, you don’t want to see a pick up in sales at Walmart.

Via WSJ:

  • Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT) says it is finally poised to end its nine straight quarters of declining sales at stores open at least a year in its core U.S. business. Executives for the world’s largest retailer said during the company’s annual meeting for analysts Wednesday morning that comparable store sales at U.S. Wal-Mart stores have been positive for the past three months, leaving Wal-Mart on track to report an end to its domestic slump when it discloses earnings next month.
  • “From about May we have been on an upward trend,” said U.S. president Bill Simon, adding that the company has had positive comparable-store sales for the three months ending in September.
  • Chief Executive Mike Duke said the company is seeing signs of an emerging class in many developing nations, presenting opportunities for growth, yet is still seeing a depressed consumer in the U.S.  “Here in the U.S., there really is an income bifurcation,” Mr. Duke said, adding, “Our customers still have concerns about jobs.”

Trader Mark is the author of Fund My Mutual Fund.

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