Lowe's revenue jumps in 4Q as housing market warms

AP News
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Posted: Feb 24, 2016 7:20 AM
Lowe's revenue jumps in 4Q as housing market warms

MOORESVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Lowe's revenue for the fourth quarter beat most expectations and its profit outlook for the year did too amid a housing recovery that is sending more do-it-yourselfers through its doors.

Unseasonably warm weather also meant that home owners tackled projects outside during what is usually a slower quarter for the industry.

For the three months ended Jan. 29, Lowe's earned $11 million, or a penny per share. Excluding a $530 million impairment charge tied to the company's exit from an Australian joint venture, earnings were 59 cents per share, which was in line with Wall Street expectations, according to a poll by Zacks Investment Research.

A year earlier the Mooresville, North Carolina-based company earned $450 million, or 46 cents per share.

Revenue rose to $13.24 billion from $12.54 billion, which was better than the $13.05 billion that analysts were projecting.

Sales at stores open at least a year climbed 5.2 percent as expected.

At U.S. locations, same-store sales increased 5.5 percent.

"We capitalized on increased demand for exterior products as a result of warmer weather, while at the same time helped customers tackle interior projects," Chairman and CEO Robert Niblock said in a written statement Wednesday.

A day earlier, rival Home Depot Inc. reported a better-than-expected fourth-quarter profit and revenue and higher same-store sales, also benefiting from the recovering housing market and pleasant weather.

Lowe's Cos. reported a full-year adjusted profit of $3.29 per share on revenue of $59.07 billion.

The company expects 2016 earnings of about $4 per share, with revenue up approximately 6 percent. It anticipates same-store sales rising about 4 percent.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet expect full-year earnings of $3.95 per share.

The company had 1,857 home improvement and hardware stores in the United States, Canada and Mexico at quarter's end.

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Elements of this story were generated by Automated Insights (http://automatedinsights.com/ap) using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on LOW at http://www.zacks.com/ap/LOW

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