Walmart (WMT 80.53) is conducting a meeting for the investment community today to discuss its strategic initiatives and outline its plan to win with customers and shareholders. Ahead of that meeting, Walmart issued a press release with some select guidance and key messages.
In brief, Walmart is focused on innovation, greater convenience, and speed in its aim to win with customers and shareholders.
Walmart is demonstrating, too, that it is in a strong competitive position with its massive store network and growing eCommerce business.
The investments Walmart has made in its stores, its associates, and its eCommerce platform have been shining through already in improved traffic and comparable sales for its core Walmart U.S. business.
The world's largest retailer has some good momentum in its business, and shareholders know it based on the performance of the stock, which is up 16.5% year-to-date and outperforming the broader market.
Shares of WMT are trading 2.0% higher in pre-market action in response to the select guidance provided in this morning's press release.
That guidance included a reiteration of adjusted EPS guidance of $4.30 to $4.40 for fiscal 2018, and a forecast for fiscal 2019 EPS to increase approximately 5% from fiscal 2018 adjusted EPS. Separately, Walmart also announced a new $20 billion share repurchase program over an approximate two year period.
For fiscal 2019, Walmart also expects consolidated net sales to grow at or above 3%, assuming currency exchange rates remain at current levels, sales growth at Walmart U.S. eCommerce to be about 40%, and the addition of 1,000 online grocery locations in Walmart U.S.