On Tuesday, Walmart reported fiscal fourth-quarter earnings that missed expectations. The big-box retail chain also provided a lower-than-expected guidance for fiscal full-year 2021.
Walmart’s adjusted earnings for the three months ending January came in at $1.38 a share, compared to the $1.44 a share expected by analysts polled by FactSet.
Sales increased to $141.67 billion, from the year-ago quarter’s $138.8 billion, but were lower than analysts' estimates of $142.5 billion.
U.S. same-store sales for Walmart climbed +1.9%, below the Street expectation of a +2.3% rise.
E-commerce sales surged +35%.
Chief Financial Officer Brett Biggs said that Walmart experienced softening demand in a few general merchandise segments in their U.S. stores in the few weeks before Christmas. Biggs also mentioned softness in some key international markets. He indicated that unrest in Chile affected majority of the company’s stores there.
Walmart’s executives are anticipating a "couple of cents" of adverse impact on the company's fiscal first quarter due to the outbreak of coronavirus. However, the company is not officially factoring the coronavirus effect into its forecast for the year.
Walmart has projected fiscal 2021 earnings of $5 to $5.15 a share - a range which is below the Street forecasts of $5.21