Wal-Mart Stores Inc. Earnings Cheat Sheet: Streak of Four Straight Profit Rises Snapped

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT) reported its results for the third quarter. Wal-Mart Stores operates Walmart discount stores, supercenters, Neighborhood Markets and Sam’s Club locations in the United States.

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Wal-Mart Stores Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Third Quarter

Results: Net income for Wal-Mart Stores Inc. fell to $3.34 billion (97 cents per share) vs. $3.44 billion (95 cents per share) a year earlier. This is a decline of 2.7% from the year earlier quarter.

Revenue: Rose 7.4% to $109.5 billion from the year earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: The company fell in line with the mean estimate of 97 cents per share. Analysts were expecting revenue of $107.87 billion.

Quoting Management: “Every business segment is stronger today than it was a year ago, and we delivered solid earnings growth for our shareholders in the third quarter,” said Mike Duke, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. president and chief executive officer. “Both Walmart U.S. and Sam’s Club exceeded comp sales guidance, and I’m pleased that the sales momentum positions us exceedingly well for the holidays. We also are pleased with the growth in both sales and operating income for Walmart International.

Key Stats:

Last quarter’s profit decrease breaks a streak of four consecutive quarters of year-over-year profit increases. In the second quarter, net income rose 5.7% from the year earlier, while the figure increased 2.3% in the first quarter, 30.7% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year and 6.1% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year.

Revenue has risen the past four quarters. Revenue increased 5.4% to $109.37 billion in the second quarter. The figure rose 4.3% in the first quarter from the year earlier and climbed 2.4% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year from the year-ago quarter.

The company fell in line with estimates last quarter after topping expectations in the previous two quarters. In the second quarter, it topped the mark by one cent, and in the first quarter, it was ahead by 3 cents.

Looking Forward: Analysts appear increasingly optimistic about the company’s results for the next quarter. The average estimate for the fourth quarter has moved up from $1.44 a share to $1.45 over the last thirty days. The average estimate for the fiscal year is $4.48 per share, a rise from $4.46 ninety days ago.

Competitors to Watch: Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT), Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ:COST), Best Buy (NYSE:BBY), Dollar General Corp. (NYSE:DG), eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY), Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD), BJ’s Wholesale Club, Inc. (NYSE:BJ), Family Dollar Stores, Inc. (NYSE:FDO), Gordmans Stores, Inc. (NASDAQ:GMAN), Dollar Tree, Inc. (NASDAQ:DLTR), Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), and Fred’s, Inc. (NASDAQ:FRED).

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(Company fundamentals provided by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)