Lowe’s Companies, Inc. has reported net earnings of $499 million for the third quarter ended November 1, 2013, a 26% increase over the same period a year ago. Diluted earnings per share increased 34.3% to $0.47 from $0.35 in the third quarter of 2012. Sales for the third quarter increased 7.3% to $13 billion from $12.1 billion in the third quarter of 2012, and comparable sales for the quarter increased 6.2%.
“I am pleased we delivered another solid quarter driven by balanced performance,” commented Robert Niblock, Lowe’s chairman, president and CEO. “This balanced performance resulted from our improved collaboration and execution within a strengthening home improvement market, combined with our employees’ hard work and continued dedication to serving customers. The home improvement industry is poised for persisting growth in the fourth quarter and further acceleration in 2014.”
Based on its year-to-date performance and outlook for the balance of the year, the company raised its fiscal year 2013 guidance, with total sales expected to increase approximately 6% and comparable store sales expected to increase approximately 5%. The company reported that it expected to open nine stores in fiscal year 2013.
The company also repurchased $761 million of stock and paid $191 million in dividends in the quarter. Lowe’s operates 1,831 home improvement and hardware stores in the United States, Canada and Mexico.