MOORESVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Shares in Lowe’s fell 8% in premarket trading Wednesday after the home improvement retailer cut its outlook for the year after a weak first quarter.
The company cited rising costs and outdated pricing tools. Lowe’s recently acquired an analytics platform it says will modernize its pricing process and improve margins.
Lowe’s is trying to close the gap with rival Home Depot, which reported better than expected profits and sales numbers Monday. Shares of Lowe’s Companies Inc. are up almost 30 percent in the last 12 months, compared with a 2.5 percent increase at Home Depot Inc.
The company earned $1.05 billion in the quarter, or $1.31 per share. Adjusted earnings were $1.22 per share, far short of the per-share earnings of $1.33 expected by Wall Street, according to a survey by Zacks Investment Research. The company had earnings of $988 million and diluted earnings per share of $1.19 in the first quarter last year.
Lowe’s revised its 2019 earnings per share outlook downward to a range of $5.45 to $5.65, from a previous range of $6 to $6.10.
The Mooresville, North Carolina, company posted revenue of $17.74 billion in the period on higher sales, topping Street forecasts for $17.63 billion. Lowe’s had revenue of $17.36 billion in the first quarter last year.
Comparable store sales, a key gauge of a retailer’s health, rose 3.5% overall, and 4.2% in the U.S.
Lowe’s shares are up 11% in 2019, and more than 20% in the last 12 months.
Lowe’s operates more than 2,000 stores in the U.S. and Canada.
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 https://www.zacks.com/ap/LOW
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