By  on August 14, 2007

NEW YORK - Wal-Mart Stores Inc. on Tuesday posted second-quarter earnings that gained 49 percent and were in line with analysts’ expectations, but the discounter also cut its full-year earnings-per-share guidance.

For the three months ended July 31, income was $3.11 billion, or 76 cents a diluted share, from $2.08 billion, or 50 cents, in the same year-ago period. Total revenues rose 8.9 percent to $93.01 billion, which included an 8.8 percent gain in sales to $91.99 billion, from $85.43 billion a year ago. The balance of the revenue came from other income such as membership fees.

For the six months, income rose 26.2 percent to $5.93 billion, or $1.44, from $4.70 billion, or $1.13, last year. Total revenues increased 8.7 percent to $179.42 billion from $165.11 billion.

The company said it expects earnings per share for fiscal 2008 to be between $3.05 and $3.13, down from initial forecasts of between $3.15 and $3.23.

“Although some people will report that Wal-Mart has had record sales and earnings, our underlying operating performance this quarter is not what we expect of ourselves, and not what our shareholders expect of us,” said Lee Scott, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., president and chief executive officer, in a statement.

Scott noted consumers continue to be under pressure economically.

For complete coverage, see Wednesday’s issue of WWD.

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