Walmart Advances Comps In Q3 As Holidays Approach

In the U.S., Walmart pointed to a favorable economy that drove comparable store sales during the third quarter that suggested market share growth in key categories.

In the third quarter, the company posted net income of $1.71 billion, or 58 cents per share, versus $1.75 billion, or 58 cents per share, in the year-prior period. Adjusted earnings per share were $1.08 versus $1 in the year-earlier quarter. Walmart topped a MarketBeat-published analyst consensus estimate of $1.02 per adjusted share in the quarter.

Walmart U.S. comp sales advanced 3.4% in the quarter, with traffic up 1.2% and ticket up 2.2% versus the period a year previous. E-commerce represented about 140 basis points of the comp.

Net sales for the U.S. division gained 3.7% to $80.58 billion as operating income advanced 2.9% to $3.94 billion from the year-earlier quarter. E-commerce sales increased 43% from the year-before period.

Overall Walmart revenue for the quarter gained 1.4% to $124.9 billion, with net sales gaining by the same proportion to $123.9 billion year over year. Operating income increased 4.7% to $4.99 billion and 5.9% on a constant currency basis to $5.04 billion from the year before.

Sam’s Club comps advanced 3.2% in the quarter year over year excluding fuel impact, with traffic up 6.2% but ticket down 3%. The division’s e-commerce sales grew 32% from the quarter a year prior and membership trends continue to improve, Walmart maintained. Net sales, fuel excluded, slipped 4.3% to $13 billion from the year-previous quarter. Operating income slid 9.9% to $345 million.

Tobacco negatively affected Sam’s Club comp sales by 250 basis points, and the transfer of sales from closed clubs contributed over half of the comp sales increase, excluding fuel, Walmart noted.

“We have momentum in the business as we execute our plan and benefit from a favorable economic environment in the U.S.,” said Doug McMillon, Walmart president and CEO. “We’re accelerating innovation and utilizing technology to shape the future of retail. We’re making shopping at Walmart faster and easier.”