Eye-on-Retail Tipsheet 2/26/13: Home Depot’s net jumps 32%; Walmart widens price gap


“Home Depot’s 4th-Quarter Net Jumps 32% on Extra Week’s Results” by Dow Jones Business News via Nasdaq.com. “Home Depot Inc.’s fiscal fourth-quarter earnings jumped 32% as the home-improvement-products retailer was helped by a comparison with a year-ago quarter that included one fewer week, pushing results above Street estimates…”We ended the year with a strong performance as our business benefited from a continued recovery in the housing market coupled with sales related to repairs in the areas impacted by Hurricane Sandy,” Chief Executive Frank Blake said on Tuesday.”  Read more:  https://www.nasdaq.com/article/home-depots-4th-quarter-net-jumps-32-on-extra-weeks-results-20130226-00215#.USykAzCG3X4


“The Home Depot Announces Fourth Quarter and Fiscal 2012 Results”  “The Home Depot, the world’s largest home improvement retailer, today reported sales of $18.2 billion for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, a 13.9 percent increase from the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. Comparable store sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012 increased 7.0 percent, and comp sales for U.S. stores were 7.1 percent…Sales for fiscal 2012 were $74.8 billion, an increase of 6.2 percent from fiscal 2011. Total company comparable store sales for the year increased 4.6 percent, and comp sales for U.S. stores were 4.9 percent for the year. Excluding the 53rd week, sales for fiscal 2012 increased by 4.5 percent from fiscal 2011.”  Read more:  https://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=63646&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1789153&highlight=


“Wal-Mart Widens Price Gap Over Target, Study Says” at Supermarket News.  “Wal-Mart Stores’ “self-funded” price investments are driving increased basket price separation from Target, Kantar Retail here said in a report released Monday.  Kantar’s semi-annual pricing study said a basket of branded goods at Wal-Mart was 4% less expansive than the same basket at Target — the largest gap since the pricing study began in 2009. While strategic price discounts on key items continue to be a cornerstone of Target’s price competitiveness, rather than everyday low prices, Target’s overall basket has not been lower than Wal-Mart’s since the January 2011 iteration of this study, Kantar said.  Read more: https://supermarketnews.com/retail-amp-financial/wal-mart-widens-price-gap-over-target-study-says#ixzz2M0U1w4jb


“Lowe’s Builds on Improvement” by Joan Solsmon at WSJ.  “The retailer has been comprehensively reviewing its product lines and progressively resetting parts of its stores to improve assortment, focus on everyday value rather than promotions and better tailor products to specific markets. Lowe’s has completed about 80% of its planned reviews of merchandise and 30% of its category resets, which are producing higher sales rates and better margins. But the changes last year took longer than expected to gain traction with customers, and the reviews were supposed to be further along by now.  Chief Customer Officer Gregory M. Bridgeford said Lowe’s is being deliberate with its resets. The company wasn’t executing them thoroughly at first, Mr. Bridgeford said, and it caused disruption as they were reworked.”  Read more: https://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324338604578325813120328822.html


“Target takes aim at Canadians, but are we too tapped out?” by Jamie Sturgeon at Global News.  “In a matter of weeks, scores of rebranded and freshly redesigned Zellers department stores will be re-launched under the new owner’s banner, providing the first real jolt of competition to Canada’s relatively cozy retail market place in two decades.  Consumers stand to gain as domestic giants like Walmart Canada, Canadian Tire, Loblaw among others are forced to slash prices, beef up loyalty programs and introduce other frills. But are consumers ready to embrace the new retailer?  A cooling economic environment, sharp slowdown in retail spending and a growing chorus of warnings from banks over personal debt levels all strongly suggest Target’s reception could be frostier than what the company was hoping for.”  Read more:  https://www.globalnews.ca/target+takes+aim+at+canadians+but+are+we+too+tapped+out/6442816264/story.html


“Martha Stewart’s JC Penney Deal Left Macy’s CEO ‘Sick'” at Reuters.  “Macy’s Chief Executive Terry Lundgren said he was shocked when Martha Stewart told him in 2011 that she was starting a new alliance with rival J.C. Penney.  Lundgren, testifying on Monday in the trial of two Macy’s lawsuits over the alliance, said Stewart told him of the deal the night before J.C. Penney announced it.  He said he was so appalled he hung up on her. “I was completely shocked and blown away,” Lundgren said. “I was literally sick to my stomach.”  Read more:  https://www.cnbc.com/id/100492718


“Apple isn’t building retail stores as fast as its sales are growing” by Erica Ogg at Gigaom.  “Apple has about 400 stores in 14 countries, and they are at peak traffic — 370 million people walked through their doors last year. But as the data below shows, while Apple is selling more iPhones, iPads and Macs than ever, it’s having a hard time keeping up on the retail store front. Horace Dediu at Asymco pulled together the data in a chart that shows how Apple isn’t building new stores fast enough relative to its expanding sales.  Read more:  https://gigaom.com/2013/02/25/apple-isnt-building-retail-stores-as-fast-as-its-sales-are-growing/


“Valassis and Roundy’s, Inc. Announce In-store Marketing Partnership”  “With this new partnership, Valassis will reach Roundy’s customers in-store while shopping in the grocery aisle. The new partnership will enable Roundy’s to create a consistent look for its marketing and media programs, aligning with the company’s overall marketing objectives and maximizing efficiencies across the Roundy’s network of stores. This will create a shopping environment that directly meets consumers’ needs.”  Read more:  https://media.prnewswire.com/en/jsp/latest.jsp?resourceid=6368217&access=EH


“Did Loblaw and Metro miss an opportunity with Safeway (Canada)?” by Jonathan Ratner at Financial Post. “Safeway Inc. looks less likely to sell its Canadian assets after the supermarket chain’s fourth quarter profit beat estimates and its discount program appears to be on the right track.  It shares surged more than 13% on Thursday after the company’s fourth quarter results beat expectations and same-store sales for the first quarter of 2013 trended higher on the back of its new “just for U” discount membership program.”  Read more:  https://business.financialpost.com/2013/02/25/did-loblaw-and-metro-miss-an-opportunity-with-safeway/


Thanks for reading…


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