) has narrowed its earnings guidance for 2012 to a range of
$10.55 to $10.75 per share from the previous view of
$10.50-$10.80. The estimate excludes reserve adjustment of 66
cents per share pertaining to settlement with the Department of
Justice regarding a dispute with the General Services
Administration and the United States Postal Service. The current
Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2012 is $10.66.
Grainger reiterated that sales would grow within the band of
11%-12% in 2012. Earlier, while releasing its third-quarter 2012
results, the company trimmed its sales forecast to the range of
11%-12% from the previous range of 12%-14%. Grainger tweaked its
sales expectation citing a weak economy.
For fourth-quarter 2012, Grainger expects sales to be within the
range of 7% to 9%. It anticipates earnings to lie within
$2.55-$2.75 per share. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the
fourth quarter is currently pegged at $2.59 per share.
Grainger also provided its outlook for 2013. It envisions sales
to grow 2% to 8% and earnings to be in the range of $10.85-$12.00
per share. The corresponding Zacks Consensus Estimate for
earnings is $11.98.
Grainger delivered a 6% year over year sales growth in October
2012. The growth was attributable to higher prices, volumes and
sales of hurricane related products resulting from storms in
Daily sales growth in November is currently trending above the 6%
level attained in October, boosted especially by higher sales in
generators, heaters, electrical and assorted product categories
supplied to the customers as part of the recovery effort made
subsequent to the storm in Northeast U.S.
Grainger, however, expects the timings of the holidays (Christmas
and New Year) to negatively impact sales growth in the fourth
quarter. Additionally, a dearth in demand due to the ongoing
global weakness will be headwind for the company on the next
Moreover, Grainger is investing significantly in product line
expansion, sales force expansion, e-commerce, inventory services,
distribution centers and international expansion and as a result
margins are expected to remain under pressure.
Grainger, which belongs to the industry equipment wholesale
industry, retains a Zacks #3 Rank (Hold).
WESCO International Inc.
Applied Industrial Technologies, Inc.
) both retain a Zacks #3 Rank (Hold) in the same industry. We
have a long-term Neutral recommendation on Grainger.
APPLD INDL TECH (AIT): Free Stock Analysis
GRAINGER W W (GWW): Free Stock Analysis
WESCO INTL INC (WCC): Free Stock Analysis
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