Walmart Inc. (WMT) – Get Report posted weaker-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings Thursday, thanks in part to a charge linked to taxes in the United Kingdom, but still managed record sales of more than $150 billion as U.S. shoppers continued to favor big-box retailers over smaller rivals.
A planned surge in investment costs, however, and a tepid fiscal-year outlook pushed shares lower in pre-market trading.
The world’s biggest retailer said adjusted earnings for the three months ended in January came in at $1.39 per share, rising just one penny from the same period last year and missing the consensus forecast of $1.50 per share. The company said a decision to repay property tax relief in the U.K., linked to its ASDA division, clipped earnings by 7 cents per share.
Group revenues, the company said, were tabbed at $152.08 billion, up 7.3% from last year and topping analysts’ estimates of $148.3