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Wal-Mart's International Biz Slows, Transformation Still In Progress

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Wal-Mart's International Biz Slows, Transformation Still In Progress
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Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE: WMT) hit a new 52-week high and a first quarter earnings beat on Thursday.

The retail giant’s core U.S. business saw 1.4-percent same-store sales growth in the quarter and traffic growth was up 1.5 percent, the best performance since fiscal year 2012.

Quarter Print, In Review

A key figure from the first quarter was Wal-Mart’s e-commerce performance, which grew a remarkable 63 percent year over year.

It appears that the company’s increased emphasis to penetrate the e-commerce world is paying off, following the $3.3 billion Jet.com acquisition Wal-Mart made last year to jumpstart e-commerce and fire back at Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN).

International business was slow, however, growing just 0.8 percent on a constant currency basis, the slowest growth since fiscal year 2010.

Analyst Commentary, Justification For Neutral Rating

“Overall, we consider this to be a decent set of results for WMT as it works on transforming its business model. The print showed WMT is making good progress. Looking ahead, a key debate will be whether it can keep up its in-store US comp growth, particularly as it grows eComm & competition in grocery intensifies,” said UBS analyst Michael Lasser following the earnings release.

UBS maintains a Neutral rating on Wal-Mart with a $73 price target.

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Related Links: Wal-Mart Showing Signs Of Life; Analyst Upgrades

Wal-Mart Hits New 52-Week Highs As Q1 Impresses Investors

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Image Credit: By 020808 at the English language Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Latest Ratings for WMT

DateFirmActionFromTo
May 2018Gordon HaskettDowngradesBuyAccumulate
Apr 2018ArgusUpgradesHoldBuy
Mar 2018OppenheimerDowngradesOutperformPerform

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