Walmart enjoyed a stellar fourth-quarter beating Wall Street on earnings as comparable sales made significant gains.
In the fourth quarter, company net income was $3.56 billion, or $1.28 per diluted share, versus a net loss of $2.09 billion, or 74 cents per diluted share, in the year-previous period, Walmart reported.
Adjusted for one-time events, diluted earnings per share were $1.53 in the quarter versus $1.39 in the year-past period.
Adjusted diluted earnings per share beat a Yahoo Finance-published analyst consensus estimate of $1.50 as revenues came in higher than the $151.53 revenue estimate. Still, e-commerce revenues increased only 1%, disappointing some observers even if digital advanced 70% on a two-year stacked basis.
Walmart posted fourth-quarter revenue of $152.87 billion, up 0.5% year over year as divestitures negatively affected the total by $10.2 billion, the company noted. Operating income was $5.89 billion versus $5.49 billion in the year-before period while adjusted operating income increased to $6.01 billion from $5.66 billion.
At Walmart U.S., fourth-quarter net sales increased 5.7% year over year to $105.28 billion as comparable sales sans fuel increased by 5.6% based on a 3.1% gain in transactions and a 2.4% advance in average ticket, the company stated. Operating income was up 0.3% to $5.18 billion versus the year-earlier period. E-commerce contribution to comps slipped by 80 basis points after making 620 basis points contribution in the prior-year period.
At Sam’s Club, fourth-quarter net sales increased 16.5% year over year to $19.25 billion as comparable sales sans fuel increased 10.4% based on a 7% gain in transactions and a 3.2% gain in average ticket, Walmart indicated. Operating income was up 41.1% to $500 million versus the year-earlier period. E-commerce contribution to comps was about 100 basis points after making a 280 basis point contribution in the prior-year period.
For the full fiscal year, company net income was $13.67 billion, or $4.87 per diluted share, versus $13.51 billion, or $4.75 per diluted share, in the year previous, Walmart maintained.
Adjusted diluted earnings per share were $6.46 versus $5.48 in the year past.
For the full year, Walmart posted net revenue of $572.75 billion up 2.4% versus the previous annum. Operating income was $25.94 billion versus $22.55 billion in the year before while adjusted operating income increased to $25.79 billion from $23.18 billion.
In a fourth-quarter conference call, Doug McMillon, Walmart president and CEO, said the company had navigated the tough marketplace well, despite the general supply chain and labor turbulence, and demonstrated that it “can keep our price gaps in the range where we want them, grow market share and deliver against our top and bottom-line growth algorithm.”
He pointed out that general merchandise comps gained in the low single digits in the U.S. even as seasonal, food, consumables and apparel made strong showings across markets.
“We had another strong quarter to finish off a strong year,” McMillon said in announcing the financial results. “We have momentum in our business in all three segments. We’re being aggressive with our plans and executing on the strategy. It’s exciting to see how the teams are simultaneously navigating today’s challenges and reshaping our business.”