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Walmart earnings beat analyst expectations behind strong e-commerce growth

Walmart posted adjusted earnings of $1.13 per share for the first quarter of 2019, coming in higher than analyst estimates of $1.02. The retail giant’s U.S. same-store sales were up 3.4 percent, its highest first-quarter results in nine years and fourth consecutive quarter over 3 percent.

Same-store sales calculate the total dollar amount of sales in stores that have been operating longer than one year.

Walmart saw rapid e-commerce growth, up 37 percent in the first quarter. The company attributed this rise largely to strong growth in its online grocery offering, but online orders in the home and fashion categories also experienced upticks.

“We’re changing to enable more innovation, speed and productivity, and we’re seeing it in our results,” Walmart President and CEO Doug McMillon said in the company’s earnings release. “We’re especially pleased with the combination of comparable sales growth from stores and e-commerce in the U.S. Our team is demonstrating an ability to serve customers today while building new capabilities for the future, and I want to thank them for a strong start to the year.”

Image: Walmart

Despite an earnings beat and strong sales growth, the retailer missed on revenue. Walmart posted $123.9 billion in revenue, up 1 percent year-over-year, but still straggling behind analysts’ expectations of $124.5 billion. The company chalked the miss up to currency fluctuations, posted revenue of $125.8 billion excluding currency.

Net sales at Walmart international were $28.8 billion, down 4.9 percent year-over-year. Excluding currency , net sales were $30.6 billion, an increase of 1.2 percent.

“Operating income declined 4.1 percent, or 3.0 percent in constant currency, which was better than planned as strong results from Walmart U.S. and Sam’s Club were offset by the inclusion of Flipkart this year,” the earnings release reads.

Company leaders expect the retailer to reach its financial goals throughout 2019.

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Ashley Coker, Staff Writer

Ashley is interested in the opportunities and issues that arise at the intersection of law and technology. She is the primary contributor to the news site content. She studied journalism at Middle Tennessee State University and worked as an editor and reporter at two daily newspapers before joining FreightWaves. Ashley spends her free time at the dog park with her beagle, Ruth, or scouring the internet for last minute flight deals.

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