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Lowe’s Misses Mark on First Quarter Earnings

Lowe’s Misses Mark on First Quarter Earnings

MOORESVILLE, N.C. — Lowe’s Companies, Inc. reported net earnings of $602 million and diluted earnings per share of $0.70 for the quarter ended May 5, 2017, compared to net earnings of $884 million and diluted earnings per share of $0.98 in the first quarter of 2016.

The first quarter results included a $464 million pre-tax loss on extinguishment of debt in connection with the company’s previously announced $1.6 billion cash tender offer.

Excluding the loss on extinguishment of debt, adjusted diluted earnings per share1 increased 18.4 percent to $1.03 from adjusted diluted earnings per share1 of $0.87 in the first quarter of 2016.

Sales for the first quarter increased 10.7 percent to $16.9 billion from $15.2 billion in the first quarter of 2016, and comparable sales increased 1.9 percent. Comparable sales for the U.S. business increased 2.0 percent.

“A solid macroeconomic backdrop, combined with our project expertise, drove above average performance in indoor projects. We also continued to advance our sales to Pro customers, delivering another quarter of comparable sales growth well above the company average,” commented Robert A. Niblock, Lowe’s chairman, president and CEO.

“Our employees are the foundation of our business and I would like to thank them for their hard work and commitment to anticipating and serving customer needs,” Niblock added.

Delivering on its commitment to return excess cash to shareholders, the company repurchased $1.2 billion of stock under its share repurchase program and paid $304 million in dividends in the first quarter.

As of May 5, 2017, Lowe’s operated 2,137 home improvement and hardware stores in the United States, Canada and Mexico representing 213.8 million square feet of retail selling space.

1Adjusted diluted earnings per share is a non-GAAP financial measure. Refer to the “Non-GAAP Financial Measures Reconciliation” section of this release for additional information as well as reconciliations between the Company’s GAAP and non-GAAP financial results.

The company reaffirms its operating outlook for Fiscal Year 2017; however, diluted earnings per share have been updated to reflect the loss on extinguishment of debt and resulting lower interest expense.

Fiscal Year 2017 — a 52-week Year (comparisons to fiscal year 2016 — a 53-week year; based on U.S. GAAP)

  • Total sales are expected to increase approximately 5 percent
  • Comparable sales are expected to increase approximately 3.5 percent
  • The company expects to add approximately 35 home improvement and hardware stores.
  • Operating income as a percentage of sales (operating margin) is expected to increase approximately 120 basis points.2
  • The effective income tax rate is expected to be approximately 37.8%.
  • Diluted earnings per share of approximately $4.30 are expected for the fiscal year ending February 2, 2018; reflective of the loss on extinguishment of debt and resulting lower interest expense.

2Includes the 12 basis points benefit of the net gain on the settlement of the foreign currency hedge entered into in advance of the company’s acquisition of RONA (1Q 2016 and 2Q 2016), the 44 basis points impact of the non-cash charge associated with the joint venture with Woolworths in Australia (3Q 2016), the 15 basis points impact of project write-offs that were a part of the ongoing review of the company’s strategic initiatives (3Q 2016), the 12 basis points impact of goodwill and long-lived asset impairment charges associated with the company’s Orchard Supply Hardware operations (3Q 2016), as well as the 13 basis points impact of severance-related costs associated with the company’s productivity efforts (4Q 2016).

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