Walmart U.S. same-store sales edge up in 4Q

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BENTONVILLE, Ark. — Walmart’s U.S. business accelerated in the fiscal 2017 fourth quarter, with domestic same-store sales posting their biggest increase since 2012.

The retail giant said Tuesday that Walmart U.S. same-store sales rose 1.8% year over year in the fourth quarter ended Jan. 31, with the gain fueled by a 1.4% uptick in traffic. Comparable-store sales at Walmart Neighborhood Market grew 5.3% for the quarter.

The increases marked the 10th consecutive quarter of same-store sales growth and ninth straight quarter of traffic gains, Walmart said. U.S. comps were boosted by strength in apparel, health and wellness, and grocery, among other categories, according to the company. Sales of electronics, media and gaming were soft.

Comparable sales at Sam’s Club rose 2.4%, excluding fuel, for the quarter.

Revenue at Walmart U.S. edged up 2.8% to $83.75 billion in the fourth quarter. At Sam’s Club, fourth-quarter sales totaled just under $15 billion, a gain of 3% year over year.

U.S. e-commerce sales jumped 29% during the quarter. Walmart said online sales were boosted by the recent acquisition of and the continued rollout of its online grocery service.

Overall, Walmart’s sales were up 1% to $130.94 billion for the fourth quarter. Total revenue excluding currency exchange came in at $133.6 billion, up 3%.

Fiscal 2017 revenue totaled $485.9 billion, a 0.8% increase. Excluding currency fluctuations, overall sales were $496.9 billion, a gain of 3.1%.

“We’re moving with speed to become more of a digital enterprise and better serve customers,” Walmart president and chief executive officer Doug McMillon said in a statement. “We had a very solid fourth quarter, with U.S. comp sales growth of 1.8% and U.S. e-commerce GMV growth of 36%. Our international business is consistently delivering solid sales growth in constant currency, and Sam’s Club posted its best comp sales growth of the year.

“We have more work to do, but I’m pleased with our progress,” McMillon added.



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