Wal-Mart First Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) will unveil its latest earnings on Thursday, May 17, 2012. Wal-Mart Stores operates Walmart discount stores, supercenters, Neighborhood Markets and Sam’s Club locations in the United States.

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average analyst estimate is for profit of $1.04 per share, a rise of 6.1% from the company’s actual earnings for the year-ago quarter. During the past three months, the average estimate has moved down from $1.06. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has been unchanged at $1.04 during the last month. Analysts are projecting profit to rise by 8% versus last year to $4.85.

Past Earnings Performance: The company fell short of estimates last quarter after being in line with forecasts the quarter prior. In the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year, it reported net income of $1.44 per share versus a mean estimate of $1.45. Two quarters ago, it reported profit of 97 cents per share.

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Wall St. Revenue Expectations: Analysts predict a rise of 6.1% in revenue from the year-earlier quarter to $110.5 billion.

Analyst Ratings: Analysts are bullish on Wal-Mart Stores, as 10 analysts rate it as a buy, one rates it as a sell and 11 rate it as a hold.

A Look Back: In the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year, profit fell 14.7% to $5.16 billion ($1.50 a share) from $6.06 billion ($1.68 a share) the year earlier, missing analyst expectations. Revenue rose 5.9% to $123.17 billion from $116.36 billion.

Key Stats:

Revenue has increased in each of the past four quarters. Revenue rose 8.1% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year from the year earlier, climbed 5.4% in the second quarter of the last fiscal year from the year-ago quarter and 4.3% in the first quarter of the last fiscal year.

The company’s net income has fallen in the last two quarters. Net income dropped 2.9% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year.

Stock Price Performance: Between February 15, 2012 and May 11, 2012, the stock price fell $1.52 (-2.5%), from $60.94 to $59.42. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between March 6, 2012 and March 15, 2012, when shares rose for eight straight days, increasing 4.5% (+$2.64) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between July 22, 2011 and August 4, 2011 when shares fell for 10 straight days, dropping 8.1% (-$4.30) over that span.

(Company fundamentals by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)

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