Before Thursday’s opening bell, discount retail Wal-Mart (WMT) released its fourth quarter financial results. Here’s what the results mean for mutual fund investors.
Inside WMT's Results
The company reported earnings of $4.97 billion, or $1.53 per share, up from $4.43 billion, or $1.36 per share, a year ago. Earnings from continued operations totaled $1.61 per share – above analysts’ view of $1.54 per share.
Revenue rose 1.4% to $131.6 billion from $129.71 billion. Analysts expected to see revenue of $132.36 billion. Comparable sales for the 13-week period ended January 30 were up 1.5%.
The company now expects to see annual EPS between $4.70 and $5.05. Analysts expect to see EPS of $5.19.
Profits Are Up, but There Are Looming Concerns
While Wal-Mart saw increased profits and comparable store sales, the spotlight has been on its announcement to boost wages 24% above minimum wage to $10 an hour. While the boost will benefit employees, the increased training and wages is expected to pressure annual profits by 20 cents per share. Additionally, the company’s profits could continue to be dragged down due to the stronger dollar.
Mutual Funds to Watch
Investors interested in WMT may be interested in the funds listed below. These funds currently have the largest stakes in the company.
|VTSMX||Vanguard Total Stock Market Index||0.86%|
|DODGX||Dodge & Cox Stock||0.58%|
|VFINX||Vanguard 500 Index||0.54%|
The Bottom Line
The funds above allow investors to gain exposure to WMT while remaining diversified. Investors interested in WMT may also be interested in Target (TGT) or Costco (COST).