Walmart Stock Hits Record Price As Earnings Surpass High Expectations

Online sales soar
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Online sales soar
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Walmart shares surged more than 8 percent to an all-tine high after the world's largest retailer revealed growth in almost all sectors of its business.

The chain reported a $1.75 billion profit on total revenues of $123.18 billion in the third quarter, which includes sales growth of 4.3 percent for Walmart's U.S. business, 4.1 percent growth for Walmart’s international stores and 4.4 percent growth at Sam's Club.

Same-store sales for U.S. stores, excluding fuel, climbed 2.7 percent, the 13 consecutive quarter of growth. The retailer cited strong growth in its food business, with an average ticket up 1.2 percent, and also acknowledged a strong boost from consumers affected by a number of hurricanes in the South.

Most tellingly, Walmart boasted 50 percent growth in online sales, a year after it acquired Jet.com.

"We have momentum, and it's encouraging to see customers responding to our store and e-commerce initiatives," CEO Doug McMillon said in a statement. "Existing customers have become advocates for popular initiatives like online grocery and free two-day shipping, and, as a result, new customers, suppliers and partnerships are coming to Walmart."

McMillon was optimistic about Q4: "As usual, we expect Walmart to largely set the tone on multiple fronts and in multiple categories for the holiday season."

In a conference call, chief financial officer Brett Briggs said, "We expect top line growth going forward to be led more by comp sales and e-commerce with less emphasis on new units in the U.S. We're prioritizing e-commerce, technology, supply chain and store remodels over new stores and clubs."

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