Fri, Nov. 13, 2:23 AM
- A Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) worker group that recently pushed the retailer to raise pay and benefits is launching a 15-day protest to rekindle the fight for $15/hour minimum wage.
- The group organizing the protests ahead of Black Friday is led by a former United Food and Commercial Workers International Union employee but no longer has the union's financial backing.
- Wal-Mart has already spent $1B this year on the wage increase to $9/hour and will raise that number to $10 for current employees by February 2016.
Thu, Nov. 12, 3:04 AM
- Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) is pulling back on the Black Friday frenzy this year, but is significantly boosting its holiday inventory.
- Instead of stretching the event over about five days as the retailer did in 2014, Wal-Mart will offer deep discounts on items starting at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving until they're all gone.
- The company also plans to offer longer term, though less drastic, discounts through the holiday season.
Mon, Nov. 9, 10:15 AM
- Department store stocks are off to a rough start with earnings coming into focus this week. Macy's (M -5.5%), J.C. Penney (JCP -4.2%), Kohl's (KSS -4.9%), Dillard's (DDS -3.3%), and Nordstrom (JWN -3.9%) are all sharply lower.
- Retailers Target (TGT -2.7%), Costco (COST -1.5%), TJX Companies (TJX -2.9%), The Children's Place (PLCE -4.8%), L Brands (LB -4.4%), and Wal-Mart (WMT -0.9%) are also below broad market averages with earnings reports due to roll in this week and next.
- The S&P Retail ETF (NYSEARCA:XRT) is down a crisp 2.0%.
Mon, Nov. 9, 9:53 AM
- Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) has reopened four of the five Supercenters that were controversially closed earlier this year. The fifth store in Florida will be open in time for the holiday season rush.
- The company took some heat for blaming the closings on plumbing issues, including allegations from the NLRB.
- Layouts at the five Supercenters have been updated during the down time.
Tue, Nov. 3, 3:49 PM
- U.S. auto sales soared in October with the Detroit Three (F, GM, FCAU) all showing double-digit gains from a year ago. An extra selling weekend helped traffic, while low gas prices drove sales for SUVs and trucks.
- The annual selling rate came in at 18.2M for the month to sail past almost all estimates. Japanese automakers performed strong, while German brands performed better than expected after some spillover from the Volkswagen cheating scandal was anticipated.
- If there's a catch, it might be what the crowding out impact is on broad retail as consumers take on larger auto payments. Retail sales have disappointed in recent months with heavyweights such as Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), Target (NYSE:TGT), Best Buy (NYSE:BBY), and Staples (NASDAQ:SPLS) unable to pull off the comps the auto sector is rolling out.
- U.S. auto sales reports
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Thu, Oct. 29, 1:46 PM
- Wal-Mart (WMT +0.5%) expects 210M visits to its mobile app this holiday season. The traffic is over 11X the 18M visits the app generated just two years.
- The company will also fire off its price-matching program this year on holiday items.
- What to watch: Wal-Mart will have to grow sales by an estimated 3.5% to 4.0% to keep pace with broad retail for the critical two-month period.
Mon, Oct. 26, 5:35 PM
- Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) has applied to the FAA for permission to test drones for home delivery, curbside pickup and checking warehouse inventories, a sign it seeks to compete with Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) in using drones to fill and deliver online orders, Reuters reports.
- In the application, WMT reportedly says to test drones In taking inventory of trailers outside its warehouses and perform other tasks aimed at making its distribution system more efficient, as well as using drones in deliveries to customers at company facilities and consumer homes.
- "There is a Walmart within five miles of 70% of the U.S. population, which creates some unique and interesting possibilities for serving customers with drones." a company spokesperson says.
Wed, Oct. 21, 8:59 AM
- The FTC says it agreed to close an investigation into Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) after the company took actions, including pulling all "Made in USA" logos from its website.
- Wal-Mart was under some heat after watchdog agencies found over 100 products mislabeled as Made in USA.
- Official FTC letter to Wal-Mart (.pdf)
Mon, Oct. 19, 10:51 AM
- Asda announces a series of sweeping changes aimed at boosting sales.
- The U.K. company plans to cut prices over the next 18 months and refurbish 95 stores as it increases its focus on the core grocery business.
- A B2B sales division will be closed.
- The U.K. grocery store chain is owned by Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT).
Mon, Oct. 19, 8:31 AM
- A long government investigation into Wal-Mart's (WMT, OTCQX:WMMVY, OTCPK:WMMVF) operations in Mexico has found very few major offenses, according to The Wall Street Journal. Originally, Wal-mart de Mexico and officials were expected to face criminal charges.
- The corruption case is now expected to be resolved with only a fine against the company.
- The DOJ case against in Wal-Mart in India is seen leading to more significant FCPA violations than the probe in Mexico.
- WMT -0.51% premarket to $58.59.
Sat, Oct. 17, 3:05 PM
- Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) ripped the band-aid off this week to reset expectations for three years worth of earnings in one decisive action.
- Though the Wal-Mart bombshell rocked a large number of retail stocks initially, many recovered during the week or pared their losses. Two notable exceptions were Target (NYSE:TGT) and Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) which ended the week sharply lower due in some part to their similar track of heavy investments in e-commerce.
- While investment firms analysts turned defensive this week on Wal-Mart (SA summary, BI summary), Target (TGT), and Best Buy (BBY) - some retail insiders see a different dynamic playing out. They note that, unlike Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), the brick-and-mortar retail giants have decades in building out strategic infrastructure, supplier networks, and delivery systems. At a larger scale, and on a longer time frame, those advantages could lead to higher margins for the trio than Amazon as tech investments pay off.
Fri, Oct. 16, 10:38 AM
- Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) is down another 1.2% to $58.61 as shares stay on their downward track.
- Fitch Ratings issued a report on the retail company today after factoring in the new guidance and buybacks plans from Bentonville.
- The ratings agency didn't reset any of its credit ratings on Wal-Mart, but warned on an expected 10% drop in operating earnings for next year.
- Fitch also called Wal-Mart's projection of $80B in cash flow growth in three years as "optimistic" in light of the strategic investments in technology and wages.
- The tone of the report is that a downgrade on WMT might be more likely than an upgrade.
- Fitch Ratings report on Wal-Mart.
- Previously: Wal-Mart sits at multi-year low after guidance stuns (Oct. 14 2015)
Thu, Oct. 15, 8:45 AM
- "Just a simple store is over," says Cowen analyst Oliver Chen. "Changes ahead to benefit the customer, but at the expense of EPS." To compete for share in the modern retail environment, says Chen, Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) must offer improved customer service, a seamless shopping experience, a sharply priced assortment, plus fast shipping. Put simply, says Chen, paying for all of this means 6-12% lower EPS in 2017. He reiterates his Market Perform rating, and cuts the price target to $66 from $77 (yesterday's close was $60.03).
- Stephens throws in the towel, downgrading to Equal Weight from Overweight. BofA and Credit Suisse do the same.
- Jefferies reiterates its Hold rating and cuts the price target to $58.
- Shares -0.5% premarket to $59.74.
- Previously: Wal-Mart sits at multi-year low after guidance stuns (Oct. 14)
- Previously: Wal-Mart slides after warning on impact of higher wage levels (Oct. 14)
Wed, Oct. 14, 11:13 AM
- Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) issued more detailed guidance numbers after management took the stage earlier today to give broad highlights.
- FY16 sales: +3% sales growth seen after excluding F/X swings.
- FY16-FY18 sales: +3% to +4% annual growth seen.
- FY17 profit: EPS expected to decline 6% to 12% due in part to wage hikes.
- FY19 profit: The company expects EPS to grow again, +5% to +10% profit growth is anticipated.
- CapEx: FY15 $11.8B; FY16 revised to $12.4B from $11.6B-$12.9B; FY17 projected at $11.0B.
- Wal-Mart also announced a new $20B share buyback plan after retiring the old authorization with a balance of $8.6B. The $20B is expected to be used up over two years.
- Shares of WMT are down 8.59% to $61.00, just off the session low of $60.12 earlier today which was also a multi-year low.
- Previously: Wal-Mart slides after warning on impact of higher wage levels (Oct. 14 2015)
Wed, Oct. 14, 10:49 AM
- Wal-Mart's (WMT -8.2%) investor day meeting is taking place today in Arkansas with a heavy focus on what direction the retail giant sees the U.S. economy heading and what the toll of higher wages will be for the company.
- In early comments, Wal-Mart management tips that technology investments and wage increases will pressure earnings in 2016. Overall sales for next year are seen coming in as flat. Guidance for 2017 appears to be for a decline in EPS as higher wages factor in significantly.
- There's also been a focus on defending the advantages of the brick-and-mortar model and some jabs at Amazon.
- Shares of Wal-Mart have tumbled during the talk and peek at guidance.
- Wal-Mart Investment Community Meeting webcast
Tue, Oct. 13, 1:41 PM
- Screening its U.S. coverage universe to find companies where its analysts views diverge widely from that of the consensus, and then narrowing further to those names with high conviction, Credit Suisse puts out a list of eight buys and 6 sells.
- The full report with thesis on each name is here.
- The buy list: Box (NYSE:BOX), Boyd Gaming (NYSE:BYD), CF Industries (NYSE:CF), Ingredion (NYSE:INGR), L-3 Communications (NYSE:LLL), LaSalle Hotel Properties (NYSE:LHO), Nationstar Mortgage (NYSE:NSM), SeaWorld Entertainment (NYSE:SEAS), Sysco (NYSE:SYY), Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), Weatherford (NYSE:WFT), and WisdomTree (NASDAQ:WETF).
- The sells: Aon (NYSE:AON), Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR), Hyatt Hotels (NYSE:H), Macerich (NYSE:MAC), Pulte (NYSE:PHM), Realogy (NYSE:RLGY).
Wal-Mart Stores Inc operates retail stores in various formats under various banners. Its operations comprise of three reportable business segments, Walmart U.S., Walmart International and Sam's Club in three categories retail, wholesale and others.
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