Thursday, November 8, 2007

Wal-Mart International Sales Strong

Lost in the commentary in yesterday's earnings release from Wal-Mart (WMT) was the fantastic international results.

At international stores, net sales rose 19.2% to $7.19 billion. In October, the company's operations in the United Kingdom, Brazil and China continued their recent positive performance. Sales throughout Brazil continue to be driven by a stronger price position, in-stock improvement and a recovery of disposable income.

Total company sales for the month rose 8.4% to $27.92 billion. At Wal-Mart stores, same-store sales were flat, while net sales rose 5% to $17.44 billion. Same-store sales at Sam's Club warehouse stores rose 2.7%, boosted by strengths in fresh food, grocery, video games and office supplies. Sam's Club net sales rose 5.3% to $3.3 billion.

What will be very interesting is too see how the "Black Friday" after Halloween will affect November sales. Initial reports are that is was a large success both online and in the stores. As the consumer feels pinched (assuming they do) Wal-Mart will benefit from this.

Now, if Lee Scott & Co. is looking at the same reports I am, I have to hope they are plowing money into both the overseas operations and stock buybacks. That is where they are going to realize the best value for the money spent.

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