Yesterday, 9:35 AM
- Buckingham Research warns on a drop in guidance from Wal-Mart (WMT -0.2%) at its upcoming Investment Community Meeting event.
- The presentation from Wal-Mart management in front of analysts is set for October 6. The impact of the recent Jet.com acquisition and speculation of a Flipkart investment are other key talking points ahead of the meeting.
- On the EPS front, there's been some hints from other retailers of steep pressure being applied from Bentonville on grocery pricing, on top of the continued IT spending and labor cost inflation.
- Seeking Alpha will cover the Wal-Mart presentation as it happens.
- Shares of WMT are rated at Neutral by Bucky with a $70 price target.
Tue, Sep. 27, 2:13 PM
- Wal-Mart (WMT +0.9%) is on the hunt for a stake in Flipkart, sources tell the Financial Times.
- Flipkart is one of the e-commerce players in India large enough to take on Amazon.
- Wal-Mart's interest in the Indian online powerhouse comes only a few months after the company's acquisition of Jet.com in another strategic counterpunch against its Seattle rival.
Fri, Sep. 23, 8:30 AM
- Barclays has upgraded Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) to Overweight from Equal Weight, saying the retailer is in the early stage of a real turnaround.
- "We believe the tide is turning. Investments in labor appear to be resonating with the employees and therefore the customers, the quality of the product offering is improving, and service and execution has improved," analyst Karen Short wrote in a research note. "WMT's recent initiatives are driving a turnaround and believe once momentum gains steam - retailers of WMT's size and scale rarely lose the momentum."
- WMT +0.8% premarket
Thu, Sep. 22, 7:21 AM| Thu, Sep. 22, 7:21 AM | 5 Comments
Wed, Sep. 21, 10:18 AM
- Wal-Mart (WMT +0.4%) began online grocery pickup in four stores in Minneapolis today, with a fifth outlet due to start the service on October 6.
- The roll-out in Minneapolis is notable with the stores not far from the headquarters of Target (TGT +1.1%).
- 30K Wal-Mart items are eligible for online grocery pickup. The minimum order amount is $30.
- Target decided earlier this year to focus on its Instacart partnership instead of a store pickup service.
Wed, Sep. 21, 9:32 AM
- India Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal says global retail giants such as Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) and Tesco (OTCPK:TSCDF, OTCPK:TSCDY) may increase their presence in the nation after relaxed rules made it easier to stock shelves with locally-sourced food.
- Though the new rules are seen as a positive step by the multinationals, they are still pushing for the ability to sell some nonfood items at the retail chain ventures before jumping in full force.
- ETFs: EPI, INDY, INDA, INDL, PIN, INP, INXX, IIF
Wed, Sep. 21, 8:35 AM
- Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) announces that it recently awarded more than $200M in second quarter cash bonuses to more than 900K hourly associates across the U.S.
- The quarterly bonus awards are part of a broad store incentive program. On a per-employees basis, the average bonus works out to just over $222 per employee.
- Wal-Mart has seen improved results in the U.S. this year and taken some market share in key categories.
- WMT +0.22% premarket to $72.13.
- Source: Press Release
Mon, Sep. 19, 5:25 PM
- Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) announced the completion of its $3B acquisition of Jet.com.
- Jet.com founder Marc Lore will now serve as executive vice president at Walmart and president and CEO of Walmart eCommerce in the U.S. He will lead both Walmart.com and Jet.com, reporting directly to CEO Doug McMillon.
- The company expects some marginal dilution above its initial $0.05 dilutive estimate to FY17 EPS.
- Source: Press Release
Sat, Sep. 17, 10:07 AM
- The IPO market gets a makeover next week with the public launch of e.l.f. Beauty (Pending:ELF). The company is selling 9.58M shares in an expected range of $14 to $16.
- The cosmetics brand is sold through e.l.f.'s website and is available at retailers such as Ulta Salon and Target, and CVS. The e.l.f. filing says the mass market cosmetics seller aims to take floor space from legacy brands (heads up AVP, EL, RDEN, REV). Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) is mentioned in the S-1, while Amazon is MIA.
- SEC S-1 dive: "We have major distribution whitespace, as we are currently in only approximately 19,000 national retail stores in the United States and believe there are thousands of additional stores available to us."
- The leading underwriters for the IPO are JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley, A lockup period of 180 days applies. TPG Growth holds a majority stake in e.l.f.
- What to watch: While consumer spending in the U.S. has been choppy, some analysts see demand in the lower-priced cosmetics category remaining strong. The spectacular run for Ulta Salon (NASDAQ:ULTA) over the last couple of years backs that trend and could be an indication of a long growth runway for e.l.f.
Thu, Sep. 15, 1:59 PM
- A new report from Moody's makes the argument that brick-and-mortar retailers such as Wal-Mart (WMT +1.2%) and Best Buy (BBY +0.1%) are thriving due to their sheer physical size. The ratings agency doesn't believe mass store closing are in the future, but sees a continuing trend toward "repurposing" of the store fleets to evolve to the multi-channel world.
- The pitch runs counter to the calls from some analysts for a mass reduction in square footage by major chains.
- Moody's on WMT: "Walmart's recent acquisition of Jet.com, while not a threat to Amazon's position, provides Walmart a speed advantage in boosting online growth by leveraging Jet's ready-made platform."
- Moody's on BBY:" Best Buy is an example of a retailer that continues to successfully transition online, with penetration approaching 20% of total sales."
- The interesting take from Moody's is probably relevant to other larger retail chains such as Staples (SPLS +1.8%), Target (TGT +0.8%), Walgreen Boots Alliance (WBA +0.3%), L Brands (LB +0.6%), Macy's (M +1%), and TJX Companies (TJX +0.8%) as well.
- Moody's press release
Thu, Sep. 15, 9:02 AM
- Retail sales fell in August on a month-over-month comparison. The drop wasn't a large surprise considering the onslaught of warnings from the retail sector on store traffic.
- 8 out of the 13 retail categories showed negative growth during the month, with the largest drops recorded in the building material/garden equipment/supplies dealers and miscellaneous store retailers categories. The broad weakness turned on its head the argument that money freed up from a lower level of auto sales would be funneled into other consumer purchases.
- Food services and drinking places showed a +0.9% M/M and +5.8% Y/Y increase in a somewhat surprising result considering the harsh read from Black Box Intelligence on August same-store sales in the restaurant sector BITE. Is the discrepancy an indication that independent restaurants are taking market share?
- On a year-over-year basis, retail sales were up 1.9%. As expected the Amazon-influenced nonstore retailers category did the heavy lifting with an 11% gain. Larger U.S. retail chains (WMT, SPLS, TGT, BBY, DG, COST, KR, WBA, CVS, LOW, HD, SWY) have been raising the issue of pricing pressure in recent conference presentations and guidance updates which could be a nagging sales deflator for the balance of the year.
- Previously: Retail sales disappoint in August (Sept. 15)
- Retail ETFs: XLP, XLY, VDC, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXG, PBJ, IYK, FXD, IYC, RHS, FDIS, PEJ, FSTA, PSL, SCC, RCD, UCC, PEZ, PMR, PSCC, UGE, PSCD, SZK, BITE, CNDF, CNSF, IBUY, JHMC, JHMS.
Thu, Sep. 15, 7:39 AM
- Wal-Mart Canada increases the pressure on Visa (NYSE:V) by extending its usage ban to all 16 stores in the province of Manitoba.
- The company is in a major spat with Visa on its fee arrangement with the payments processor. There are already 3 Wal-Mart Canada stores in Ontario where Visa isn't being accepted.
- The ban in Manitoba begins on October 24.
- Wal-Mart Canada is a division of Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT).
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).
- Retail ETFs: XLY, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, IYK, FXD, IYC, FDIS, SCC, RCD, UCC, PMR, UGE, SZK.
Tue, Sep. 13, 3:36 PM
- Wal-Mart (WMT -0.6%) won a patent approval from the government on the design of an unique self-driving cart.
- The filing indicates the retailer is working to develop a motorized cart with sensors and video cameras.
- The system could eliminate the need for employees to round up shopping carts and assist shoppers with some functions.
Mon, Sep. 12, 8:52 AM
- At least 31 people died in a fire at a factory in Bangladesh near the capital of Dhaka.
- An explosion was reported at the packaging factory before the blaze consumed the building.
- Factory safety has been a major point of concern for companies such as Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), Gaps (NYSE:GPS), and Hennes and Mauritz (OTCPK:HNNMY, OTCPK:HMRZF) that source from the region.
Mon, Sep. 12, 7:19 AM
- Cowen and Company upgrades Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) to an Outperform rating.
- Cowen tweet: "Oliver Chen revisits $WMT investment thesis. Focuses on investments, efforts to integrate physical + digital & the Jet acquisition."
- A price target of $83 is set by Cowen on the retailer vs. the 52-week range of $56.30 to $75.19.
- WMT -1.00% premarket to $69.60.