Comp sales decelerate at Whole Foods Market

|By:, SA News Editor

Whole Food Market (NASDAQ:WFM) reports comparable-store sales rose 3.9% in FQ3 vs. 4.7% consensus. The mark extends a streak of decelerating comp growth (4.5% in FQ2, 5.4% in FQ1, 5.9% in FQ4) and looks even worse in light of the shift of Easter into the quarter.

Transactions were up 2% in FQ3, while the average basket was 1.9% higher.

Average weekly sales per store were $736K.

The company announces a new $1B buyback program.

FY14 guidance: Comp sales 9.6%-9.9%; store count +38; EBITDA margin 9.1%-9.2%; EPS $1.52-$1.54

WFM -4.8% AH