Seeking Alpha

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT)

  • Sep. 10, 2013, 6:42 AM
    • Wal-Mart (WMT) launches a smartphone trade-in program in the U.S.
    • Beginning on September 21, shoppers can receive store credit for $50 to $300 to purchase a new smartphone by trading in their old phone.
    | Comment!
  • Sep. 9, 2013, 12:43 PM
    • Wal-Mart (WMT +0.8%) is fairly priced to the retailer's modest pace of growth, but could run higher as sales improve in 2014, says Goldman Sachs.
    • The investment firm has a 12-month price target of $83 on WMT, repping solid upside for the stock which has ranged from $67.37 to $79.96 over the last year.
    | Comment!
  • Sep. 9, 2013, 8:06 AM
    • As headlines die out about street-level protests against retail giants such as McDonald's (MCD) and Wal-Mart (WMT) over wages paid to workers, Douglas McIntyre thinks the groups should take their fight online.
    • He notes Occupy Wall Street died out rather quickly, while online Twitter accounts and Facebook groups can work 24/7 to gain steam.
  • Sep. 4, 2013, 6:57 PM
    • There's been no change in the list of top 10 holdings of Morningstar's Ultimate Stock Pickers so far this year, but one wonders about the fate of Microsoft (MSFT) after its much criticized purchase of Nokia's main handset business; it had been the top high-conviction holding in the group.
    • The top 10 holdings: MSFT, GOOG, WFC, JNJ, BRK.B, AIG, PG, WMT, PEP, UPS.
    • Among purchases during the most recent period, National Oilwell Varco (NOV) topped the top 10 list of high-conviction buys, followed by WFC, GM, SLB, INTC, AAPL, XOM, APA, CHRW, EMC.
  • Aug. 30, 2013, 11:33 AM
    • Wal-Mart (WMT +0.5%) is close to formally asking the Indian Trade Ministry for permission to operates supermarkets in the nation.
    • The U.S. retailing giant will be the first company to test new rules in the nation which allow foreign companies to own a 51% stake in supermarkets.
    • If the past is prelude, Wal-Mart could see a few more hiccups before it's actually up and running in India.
    | Comment!
  • Aug. 30, 2013, 7:09 AM
    • Wal-Mart (WMT) says it will send $50M in low-interest loans to help support building improvements in Bangladesh.
    • The push by Wal-Mart and other retailers to improve working conditions in Bangladesh is in response to a devastating building collapse last April.
    | Comment!
  • Aug. 29, 2013, 7:05 AM
    • Wal-Mart (WMT) says it will update shareholders today on its sourcing practices in Bangladesh.
    • The briefing will include details on a plan to improve workers safety, according to a Wal-Mart exec.
    | Comment!
  • Aug. 28, 2013, 10:50 AM
    • Retail traffic to U.S. stores has declined in 8 out of the last 10 weeks, according to data compiled from ShopperTrak.
    • Though a few on-trend firms such as Michael Kors (KORS +0.1%) and Express (EXPR +8.5%) are still firing on all cylinders, and a heat wave in the Midwest has had an effect, the overall trend for the back-to-school season and holiday season looks weak.
    • Analysts also think consumers are likely to pick up their reliance on deals as discretionary spending on housing and automobiles "crowds out" normal outlays.
    • Related ETFs: XRT, RTH, PMR, RETL.
    | 1 Comment
  • Aug. 28, 2013, 5:07 AM
    • After almost two decades of Internet shopping in which Amazon has become a behemoth, many major bricks and mortar retailers are still struggling to take advantage, as new correspondence with the SEC shows.
    • Target (TGT), for example, told investors last week that its digital sales have grown by double digits, but when pressed by the SEC, said they're an "immaterial amount of total sales."
    • Fifth & Pacific (FNP) has told investors that it's "ravenously growing business in e-commerce," but then said that providing a specific figure wasn't "relevant to investors."
    • The SEC has also queried the claims of Wal-Mart (WMT), which now predicts 2013 online revenue of $10B vs consensus estimates for total sales of $481.52B, and PetSmart (PETM).
    • Retailers argue that because customers use the Internet and stores to make purchases, in the words of Target's Casey Carl, "it doesn't make sense to delineate between whether it's an online or in-store sale."
  • Aug. 26, 2013, 10:46 AM
    | Comment!
  • Aug. 26, 2013, 7:57 AM
    • A scorching heat wave in the Midwest will continue throughout the week in a development which could trim back-to-school spending excursions, warns Brian Sozzi.
    • Lower store traffic could wreak havoc on inventory with many retailers banking on using school supplies as a loss leader to help boost apparel and computer/tablet sales.
    • Looking for relief: SPLS, OMX, ODP, TGT, WMT.
  • Aug. 25, 2013, 4:49 PM
    • Wal-Mart (WMT) has "stopped expanding" in India despite the fact that the retailer and its joint venture partner Bharti Enterprises "had started to do reasonably well," a retail analyst tells FT.
    • The Indian government is examining whether WMT's $100M convertible debenture investment in Cedar Support Services (the parent of Bharti Retail) amounted to an illegal foreign direct investment in supermarkets.
    • Cedar was initially called Bharti Retail Private Ltd, but changed its name and altered its articles of association in 2009 in what may have been a move designed to allow foreign direct investment in the company.
    • Some allege that the transaction was simply a way for WMT to invest directly in EasyDay convenience stores ahead of a government decision to make such foreign investments legal — the debentures could be converted into equity as soon as the government decided to "allow foreign ownership of front-end retail businesses."
    • Many retailers are taking a wait-and-see approach to India as Parliamentary elections next year could ultimately lead to foreign direct investment in supermarkets being declared illegal once again.
    | 1 Comment
  • Aug. 22, 2013, 12:00 PM
    • At first glance the move by UPS to cut health benefits for employees' spouses looks controversial, but the plan doesn't apply to 250K workers who are either in the Teamsters union or work outside the U.S.
    • Analysts think that with the Obama administration sure to get much of the flak over the measure and the Teamsters calm, other large companies could follow the lead of UPS.
    • Companies with the most employees: Wal-Mart (WMT) 2.2M, Yum Brands (YUM) 523K, McDonald's (MCD) 440K, IBM (IBM) 434K, UPS (UPS) 399K, Target (TGT) 361K, Kroger (KR) 343K.
  • Aug. 21, 2013, 1:40 PM
    • Retail is in a state of "bifurcation" as on-trend luxury retailers (KORS, JWN, TIF) and home improvement specialists (HD, LOW) thrive, while heavyweight merchandise retailers (WMT, TGT, COST), mall-based apparel chains (AEO, ARO, LTD), and discounters (DG, DLTR, FDO) disappoint.
    • As execs with Target noted during the firm's earnings call this morning, consumers seem more than happy to buy new automobiles and fix up their houses - but have tightened up on toothbrushes, socks, and soap.
    • A few companies - through some good luck and solid execution - sit in a consumer demand sweet spot. Ross Stores (RST), TJX Companies (TJX), and Subaru (FUJHY.PK) come to mind.
    • Related ETFs: XRT, RTH, PMR, RETL.
  • Aug. 21, 2013, 12:22 PM
    • Wal-Mart (WMT -0.1%) eliminates a $5 fee to participate in its layaway program to fire one of the first shots of the holiday season promotional battles in retail.
    • The company's layaway program will run from September 13 to December 13.
    • Other retailers such as K-Mart (SHLD), Toys R Us, and Best Buy (BBY -1.9%) are likely to match Wal-Mart's layaway offer.
    | Comment!
  • Aug. 20, 2013, 8:19 AM
    • Susquehanna downgrades Wal-Mart (WMT) to Neutral from Positive as it sees consumer spending remaining challenged.
    • Moderate food inflation will also cut into Wal-Mart's margins with the retailing giant leaning more heavily on selling food, according to the investment firm.
    • WMT -0.2% premarket.
Visit Seeking Alpha's
WMT vs. ETF Alternatives
Company Description
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.