By NZHJ August 31, 2016 International News

Home Depot, Lowe’s fly in the face of US retail negativity, B&Q looks better too.

Home Depot’s biggest ever quarter

Mid-August saw The Home Depot report Q2 FY2016 sales of US$26.5 billion (+6.6%) and comparable store sales +4.7%.

Net earnings for the second quarter of fiscal 2016 were US$2.4 billion, with diluted earnings per share +13.9%.

It may have been just a “solid quarter”, says America’s #1 DIY retailer, but it also marked the highest quarterly sales and net earnings results in company history.


Lowe’s growth not far behind

The day after The Home Depot, Lowe’s reported its Q2 net earnings as US$1.2 billion, +3.7%. Diluted earnings per share were +9.2%.

For the 6 months to end July, net earnings were +14% at US$2.1 billion, and diluted earnings per share were +20.5%.

Lowe’s Q2 sales were +5.3% at US$18.3 billion while comparable sales were +2%. For the 6 months, sales were $33.5 billion (+6.4%) with comparables +4.4%.

Armed with this “solid” H1 result, Robert A Niblock, Lowe’s Chairman, President and CEO says the firm is “well positioned to capitalize on a favorable macroeconomic backdrop for home improvement in the second half of this year.”


Ace aces net earnings

From Oakbrook Illinois, Ace Hardware’s Q2 figures reveal record revenues of US$1.4 billion from its 3,000 retailers.

That’s just a +0.6% top line increase on last year but, going now to the bottom line, Ace’s net income of $63.4 million was a better looking +5.8%.

For the first 6 months of 2016, retail same store sales were +2.4% thanks to a 2.2% increase in average transaction size.


B&Q fares better in Kingfisher Q2 result

In Europe, Kingfisher’s financials for Q2 to 31 July 2016 reveal a mixed bag of performances across its various territories.

Overall, Kingfisher’s Q2 sales were +8.4% (£3.026b) and like for likes. CEO Véronique Laury called the result “another solid sales performance” and admitted Brexit had “created uncertainty for the economic outlook, although there has been no clear evidence of an impact on demand so far on our businesses”.

The short term outlook is “cautious”.

The UK & Ireland for example saw sales +5.1% and LFls +7.2%. B&Q showed slim top line growth (+0.3%) but a better +5.6% for LFLs. It may see less than a third of B&Q’s revenue, but Screwfix, B&Q’s trade facing stablemate, again fared better and is still on a roll with sales +24.5% and LFLs +13.3%.

France was +10.4% on sales but negative (–3.1%) on LFLs, and both Castorama and Brico Depot fared similarly thanks to industrial action and wet weather.

Poland, Russia and Spain together were +12.8% for sale and +7% for LFLs and only Russia saw negative growth in sales.

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