I view Walmart’s results and comments as particularly noteworthy given their retail prominence and focus on low prices. I have previously commented on their quarterly management call comments; these previous posts are found under the “paycheck to paycheck” label.
Here are various excerpts that I find most notable:
comments from Doug McMillon, President and CEO, page 2, wrt Walmart U.S.:
Walmart U.S. continues to perform well with comp sales growth, excluding fuel, of 2.1 percent. Greg and the Walmart U.S. team continue to strengthen our supercenters. We’ve improved our merchandising in areas like fresh food with better lighting, an expanded deli offer, and an improved bakery layout to make it easier for customers to navigate. We also recently introduced new apparel brands with improved design, quality and value. Customer experience scores continue to improve as we’ve lowered prices and taken steps to make shopping with us easier and more enjoyable. We aim to make shopping easy, fast, friendly and fun for customers, and our team continues to make progress towards that goal. I continue to be impressed by the progress the team is making on inventory management. They’ve put together a string of 12 quarters of reduced comp store inventory while maintaining strong in-stock levels. eCommerce sales accelerated in the first quarter with 33 percent growth, and we expect to grow sales about 40 percent for the full year. Sam’s Club comps improved 5.2 percent, excluding fuel and a 140 basis point decrease for tobacco. Outside of the U.S., eight of eleven markets posted positive comp sales, including our four largest markets of Mexico, U.K., China and Canada. So overall, we feel pretty good about this quarter.
comments from Doug McMillon, President and CEO, page 3, wrt Walmart U.S.:
I’ll start with Walmart U.S.
In addition to comp sales growth of 2.1 percent, more people shopped with us as comp traffic improved 0.8 percent. Comp sales were trending higher through early April, but general merchandise sales and traffic were somewhat negatively impacted by unseasonably cool weather in April.