Wal-Mart profit ticks up, trails forecasts

Posted: May 16, 2013 at 7:03 a.m.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. reported Thursday first-quarter net income of $3.78 billion, up about 1.1 percent from the $3.74 billion earned in the previous first quarter.

The Bentonville-based retailer said that for the quarter ending April 30, earnings per share came to $1.14, a 4.6 percent increase from the $1.09 reported in the same quarter the year before.

Total revenue for the first quarter was $114.2 billion, the retailer said in a statement, up 1 percent from the year before. Net sales for the quarter were $113.4 billion, also a 1 percent increase, the retailer said.

"In a quarter marked by considerable headwinds to top line sales, Walmart delivered solid EPS growth of 4.6 percent," said President and Chief Executive Officer Mike Duke said in the statement.

"I'm confident about our long-term strategy and the direction Walmart is headed. Our expectations about our U.S. businesses' performance, coupled with more discipline in International, will allow us to improve our performance throughout the year," Duke added.

The company projected second-quarter earnings per share of between $1.22 and $1.27, compared with $1.18 last year.

The first-quarter earnings results fell slightly behind estimates. Retail analysts had on average predicted earnings of $1.15 per share on revenue of $116.42 billion. The prediction was made by 22 analysts reporting to Yahoo Finance.

Shareholders and others in the United States and Canada can listen in on a conference call regarding the earnings results by dialing (877) 523-5612; access code: 9256278 (W-A-L-M-A-R-T), followed by the pound (#) sign. All other callers can dial (201) 689-8483, access code: 9256278 (W-A-L-M-A-R-T), followed by the pound (#) sign.

Also, a pre-recorded phone call and webcast about the results are available on http://www.walmart.com.