The world's largest home improvement retailer,
The Home Depot Inc.
) reported better-than-expected results for the third quarter of
fiscal 2013. The company's earnings of 95 cents per share
exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 89 cents, primarily due
to the ongoing recovery of the U.S. housing market and strong
operating performance. Moreover, the company's quarterly earnings
surged 28.4% from the comparable prior-year period earnings of 74
cents a share.
Net sales of this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company increased 7.4% to
$19,470 million compared with $18,130 million in the year-ago
quarter, primarily driven by increased comparable store sales.
Moreover, net sales surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of
Sales, at the company's comparable stores improved 7.4%, while
comparable store sales in the U.S. stores grew 8.2%.
Gross profit increased 8.5% to $6,798 million from $6,267 million
reported in the comparable year-ago quarter. Gross profit margin
expanded 30 basis points (bps) to 34.9% compared with 34.6% in
the third quarter of fiscal 2012.
Operating profit during the quarter jumped 32.3% to $2,293
million against $1,733 million in the year-ago comparable
quarter. Operating margin expanded 220 bps to 11.8% compared with
9.6% in the year-ago quarter. The improvement in operating margin
was driven by improved gross margin and effective cost
Balance Sheet and Cash Flow
Home Depot, which competes with
Lowe's Companies Inc.
), ended the third quarter with cash and cash equivalents of
$4,853 million, long-term debt (excluding current maturities) of
$14,692 million and shareholders' equity of $14,214 million.
During the nine months of fiscal 2013, the company generated
$5,981 million of cash from operations and deployed $6,446
million toward share buyback, $1,699 million for dividend payment
and $964 million for capital expenditures.
Fiscal 2013 Outlook Raised
Bolstered by better-than-expected quarterly results and an
encouraging forward outlook, Home Depot raised its sales forecast
for fiscal 2013, projecting sales growth of about 5.6%, with
comparable store sales gain of 7%. Earlier, the company had
anticipated sales to increase 4.5% year over year, while
comparable store sales were expected to increase nearly 6%.
Moreover, the company now anticipates fiscal 2013 earnings per
share to grow by approximately 24% to $3.72, compared with the
previous forecast of nearly 20% growth to $3.60. Furthermore,
Home Depot is committed towards enhancing shareholder's value
through share repurchases and dividend payments. The company
intends to repurchase an additional $2.1 billion of its common
stock during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2013.
Other Stocks to Consider
Other stocks worth considering in the home improvement retail
Builders FirstSource Inc.
), which has a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), and
Lumber Liquidators Holdings Inc.
) that carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
BUILDERS FIRSTS (BLDR): Free Stock Analysis
HOME DEPOT (HD): Free Stock Analysis Report
LUMBER LIQUIDAT (LL): Free Stock Analysis
LOWES COS (LOW): Free Stock Analysis Report
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