Whole Foods Market, Inc.NASDAQ
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  • Tue, Nov. 15, 9:52 AM
    • Amazon (AMZN +2.6%announced today that it launched its one-hour restaurant delivery service in Irvine, California. More than 50 restaurants are included in the program, with most appearing to be independent operators.
    • Amazon Restaurants is now active in six California cities. The program is for Prime members only and includes no mark-ups from the pricing listed on the restaurants' menus.
    • A broader roll-out of Amazon Restaurants could eventually threaten InstaCart, GrubHub (NYSE:GRUB), HelloFresh and Blue Apron - as well as nip at after work takeout traffic at Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFM). It could also be a concern for operators such as DineEquity (NYSE:DIN), Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) and Brinker International (NYSE:EAT) as it gives independent restaurants a formidable partner.
    | Tue, Nov. 15, 9:52 AM | 20 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 9, 1:14 PM
    • Retail store chains are breaking higher as investors digest the impact of the GOP sweep.
    • A very popular topic on Q3 conference calls was election anxiety in the U.S., with the thought that consumers were holding back.
    • An interesting point is that in recent consumer sentiment surveys Republicans showed a sharply lower positive reading on the state of affairs than Democrats. If the theory holds out, close to 60M Trump voters will now open their pocketbooks a bit more.
    • Gainers include Fred's (FRED +10.5%), Tuesday Morning (TUES +7.1%), Kroger (KR +4.2%), Whole Foods Market (WFM +2.5%), Supervalu (SVU +4.2%), Ollie's Bargain Outlet Holdings (OLLI +3%) Stage Stores (SSI +6.7%), Build-A-Bear Workshop (BBW +2.7%), Kohl's(KSS +3.3%), Dillard's (DDS +2.2%), Stein Mart (SMRT +4.5%), Tailored Brands (TLRD +4.1%), Guess (GES +3.6%), Gap (GPS +3.1%), Buckle (BKE +3.6%) and PriceSmart (PSMT +1.4%).
    | Wed, Nov. 9, 1:14 PM | 7 Comments
  • Fri, Nov. 4, 1:25 PM
    | Fri, Nov. 4, 1:25 PM | 17 Comments
  • Thu, Nov. 3, 1:17 PM
    • Whole Foods Market (WFM +0.8%) is marginally higher after showing some sequential improvement with comparable sales. The company is still under pressure to maintain traffic and hold pricing due to the shifting sector.
    • “Competition is everywhere; everybody’s feeling it,” noted Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFM) CEO John Mackey on the firm's earnings call yesterday.
    • Mackey cited Amazon Fresh, Blue Apron, Hello Fresh, Plated, Sprouts Farmers Market and Fresh Thyme as new rivals for the company on top of traditional grocery chains.
    • On the 365 roll-out, Whole Foods says it will make some tweaks and adjustments before really hitting the gas on expansion. 19 stores are currently in development.
    • Whole Foods earnings call transcript
    • Previously: Whole Foods Market beats by $0.04, revenue in-line (Nov. 2)
    • Previously: Whole Foods higher after EPS beat, dividend hike and sole CEO switch (Nov. 2)
    | Thu, Nov. 3, 1:17 PM | 16 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 2, 4:42 PM
    • Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFM) reports comparable-store sales fell 2.6% in FQ4.
    • Average basket size during the quarter was up 1.6%. The number of transactions were down 4.2%.
    • The company's gross margin declined 53 bps Y/Y to 33.9%.
    • SG&A expense rate +5 bps to 29.1% of sales.
    • EBITDA was reported at 7.9% of total sales. Adjusted return on invested capital was 13%.
    • FY17 guidance: The company expects sales growth of 2.5 to 4.5% on a -2% to falt comp.
    • Q4 comparable-store sales guidance: -1.6% through October 30.
    • John Mackey as named the single CEO of the company. Walter Robb will remain on the board.
    • The company has a conference call scheduled for 5:00 ET (webcast).
    • Previously: Whole Foods Market beats by $0.04, revenue in-line (Nov. 2)
    • WFM +4.70% after hours to $32.41.
    | Wed, Nov. 2, 4:42 PM | 10 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 2, 4:22 PM
    • Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFM): FQ4 EPS of $0.28 beats by $0.04.
    • Revenue of $3.5B (+1.7% Y/Y) in-line.
    • Shares +2.07%.
    • Press Release
    | Wed, Nov. 2, 4:22 PM | 5 Comments
  • Tue, Nov. 1, 5:35 PM
  • Thu, Oct. 27, 2:41 PM
    • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) sees an opportunity in the U.S. to open up as many as 2K Amazon Fresh grocery stores in the next ten years, according to Business Insider.
    • A 20-store pilot program is expected to be up and running by the end of 2018, with a mix of traditional-style grocery stores and online pickup locations.
    • Internal documents reviewed by BI indicate that Amazon is still deciding if the stores will be tied to Amazon Prime memberships.
    • Amazon's determination with a large-scale store roll-out could have significance for grocery stores and other retail chains (WMK, SVU, WFM, IMKTA, CASY, KR, SFS, WBA, CASY, WMT, TGT, RAD) as they consider their own future models.
    | Thu, Oct. 27, 2:41 PM | 82 Comments
  • Thu, Oct. 20, 3:29 PM
    • The Detroit Health Department is investigating two cases of Hepatitis A linked to food prepared at a Whole Foods Market (WFM -1.5%) store in Detroit.
    • One of the two people involved is reported to be an employee of Whole Foods.
    | Thu, Oct. 20, 3:29 PM | 9 Comments
  • Thu, Oct. 6, 11:08 AM
    • M&A chatter is running up and down the grocery store sector.
    • Kroger (KR +1.1%), Sprouts Farmers Market (SFM +2.1%), and Whole Foods Market (WFM +2%) are all way ahead of broad market averages.
    • Grocery store names have been sensitive to buyout talk ever since The Fresh Market was taken private at a huge premium.
    | Thu, Oct. 6, 11:08 AM | 14 Comments
  • Thu, Sep. 29, 7:06 AM
    | Thu, Sep. 29, 7:06 AM
  • Tue, Sep. 27, 1:31 PM
    • Food prices are in one of their longest period of deflation since 1960 in a devastating trend for grocery store chains.
    • USDA data shows nine straight months of year-over-year declines, including the sharpest of the bunch in August when prices peeled back 1.9%.
    • While lower commodity costs are in play in many key categories (milk, eggs, meat), it's the relentless pressure from Wal-Mart, Aldi's, Dollar General, and even Amazon to increase traffic that's the real margin pincher.
    • "It starts to border on irrational pricing," notes Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Jennifer Bartashus on the development.
    • A more detailed look at food prices is available inside the latest CPI report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
    • Related stocks: KR, SFM, WFM, SVU, WMK, IMKTA, SPTN.
    | Tue, Sep. 27, 1:31 PM | 27 Comments
  • Thu, Sep. 15, 10:45 AM
    • Whole Foods Market (WFM) opened up its third store in the 365 format with a new location in Bellevue, Washington.
    • Consistent with the other two 365 outlets, the new store has around 7K products instead of the 25K normally available at a full-sized Whole Foods store. Pricing in general is also lower.
    • The 365 roll-out will proceed at a measure pace, with another ten opening anticipated by the end of next year.
    • Whole Foods' next quarterly report due out on November 2 could be the first look at the pace of sales and underlying margins at 365 locations if the company breaks them out.
    • Puget Sounds Business Journal 365 slideshow
    | Thu, Sep. 15, 10:45 AM | 11 Comments
  • Wed, Sep. 14, 2:09 PM
    • All eyes in the retail sector will be on the Department of Commerce's report on August sales tomorrow. Economists will be looking for confirmation that the dip into negative territory in July was only transitory. The impact of the recent slowdown in auto sales has been debated, with some analysts saying it's indicative of tight consumer spending, while others feel it reverses the "crowding out" effect of auto purchases.
    • The consensus estimate is for a 0.4% M/M gain after backing out the gas and auto categories. The direction of U.S. retail sales will also give Fed watchers their latest talking point.
    • If there's a wildcard in the mix, it could be price deflation in the grocery store category (KR, SFM, WFM, SVU, WMK, IMKTA). That pricing weakness could also spill over to affect general merchandise stores (WMT, TGT), drug store chains (WBA, RAD), and even nip at chains like Casey's General Stores (NASDAQ:CASY) and CST Brands (NYSE:CST).
    | Wed, Sep. 14, 2:09 PM | 6 Comments
  • Thu, Sep. 8, 8:38 AM
    • Execs in the grocery sector have painted a bleak picture this week on current sales trends during their presentations at various retail conferences.
    • Weak pricing has been a major talking point, while some companies say a lower level of government benefits have also come into play.
    • While the down trend was tipped off a few weeks ago when the Commerce Department reported a drop in grocery store sales for July, the new twist is that companies such as Supervalu (NYSE:SVU) and Sprouts Farmers Market (NASDAQ:SFM) are now talking about the pressure extending through the end of the year.
    • Related stocks: KR, WFM, SFS, IMKTA, WFM, CASY, VLGEA, WMK, TGT, WMT.
    | Thu, Sep. 8, 8:38 AM | 44 Comments
  • Wed, Sep. 7, 10:22 AM
    • Weak guidance issued earlier today from Sprouts Farmers Market (SFM -13.9%) is slicing deeply through the grocery store sector.
    • If there's a word to sum up the negative vibe in the sector it would be "deflation" after Sprouts execs came clean on the negative impact of falling prices.
    • Decliners include Whole Foods Market (WFM -5.2%), Kroger (KR -4.1%), Supervalu (SVU -2%), Ingles Markets (IMKTA -3.4%), and Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage (NGVC -3.2%).
    • Previously: Sprouts Farmers Market slumps after updating guidance (Sept. 7)
    | Wed, Sep. 7, 10:22 AM | 24 Comments