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Walmart Q4 earnings $1.39 per share

Christian Fernsby |
Walmart disappointed the equity markets Thursday with a 12-cent per share earnings miss in the fourth quarter, despite record revenue and strong same-store sales.

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Topics: WALMART   

Fourth quarter earnings on an adjusted basis were $1.39 per share, lower than the $1.51 consensus estimate.

The global retailer posted a net income loss of $2.091 billion in the fourth quarter primarily because of accounting charges related to the sale of assets and operations in Argentina, Japan, and the United Kingdom. The company posted net income of $4.141 billion in the fiscal fourth quarter of 2019.

Walmart shares tumbled more than 5% to $139 in early trading primarily because of weaker guidance for the year as the retail giant will raise hourly wages for 425,000 workers to more than $15, and spend more money in supply chain capabilities to support online sales.

Revenue in the fourth quarter was a record $152.079 billion, up 7.3% as U.S. same-store sales rose 8.6% with a 69% spike in e-commerce sales. Sam’s Club also reported robust comp sales in the quarter, up 10.8% with e-commerce sales rising 42%. Revenue for the quarter was $16.5 billion, up 8.1%. Membership income rose 12.9% in the quarter, the strongest increase in six years. Walmart said its international division had sales of $34.9 billion in the quarter, up 5.5%, with positive comp sales in Mexico, China and Canada.

Walmart reported full year record revenue of $559.151 billion, up 6.7% or $35.2 billion. Net income for the year was $13.51 billion, down from $14.881 billion in the previous fiscal year. Adjusted earnings per share totaled $5.48, less than the $5.60 consensus estimate.

Walmart said it incurred $1 billion in COVID-related costs in the fourth quarter and $4 billion for the year. Given the uncertainty in the economy related to more federal stimulus, vaccine rollout and effectiveness against COVID-19, Walmart forecast earnings to be down slightly this year. The company plans to invest $14 billion in supply chain, automation and customer support.

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