Lowe’s Companies, Inc. has reported net earnings of $1.04 billion for its second quarter ended August 1, 2014, a 10.4% increase over $941 million in the same period a year ago. Diluted earnings per share increased 18.2% to $1.04 from $0.88 in the second quarter of 2013. Sales for the second quarter increased 5.7% to $16.6 billion from $15.7 billion in the second quarter of 2013, and comparable sales for the quarter increased 4.4%.
For the six months ended August 1, net earnings increased 12.2% from the same period a year ago to $1.66 billion, and diluted earnings per share increased 20.6% to $1.64. For the six month period, sales were $30 billion, a 4.2% increase over the same period a year ago, and comparable sales increased 2.8%.
“We were able to recover most of the outdoor product sales missed in the first quarter due to unfavorable weather conditions,” said Robert Niblock, Lowe’s chairman, president and CEO. “We believe home improvement spending will continue to progress in tandem with strengthening job and income growth. Our year-to-date sales performance, together with our previous assumptions for the second half of 2014, result in a modest reduction to our sales outlook for the year. Our diluted earnings per share outlook is unchanged, which is a testament to our keen focus on profitability.”
In addition, the company repurchased $1.1 billion of stock under its share repurchase program and paid $183 million in dividends in the second quarter. For its fiscal year 2014 outlook, Lowe’s stated that total sales are expected to increase approximately 4.5%, with comparable sales expected to increase approximately 3.5%. The company expects to open approximately 10 home improvement and five hardware stores this year.
Lowe’s operates 1,837 home improvement and hardware stores in the United States, Canada and Mexico.