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November 15, 2012 at 08:48 AM EST
Wal-Mart’s Q3 Profit Beats, but Revenue and Q4 Outlook Miss; Shares Fall (WMT)

Retail superpower Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT) on Thursday posted mixed third quarter earnings results and offered a weaker-than-expected fourth quarter outlook, sending its shares lower in premarket trading.

The Bentonville, AR-based company reported third quarter net income of $3.64 billion, or $1.08 per share, compared with $3.34 billion, or 96 cents per share, in the year-ago period.

Revenue rose 3.4% from last year to $113.9 billion.

On average, Wall Street analysts expected a slightly smaller profit of $1.07 per share, albeit on higher revenue of $114.96 billion.

Looking ahead, WMT forecast fourth quarter adjusted earnings of $1.53, to $1.85 per share, which would miss analysts’ view of $1.59. For the full year, the company lifted the low end of its outlook. It now expects $4.88 to $4.93 per share for the year. Analysts are looking for $4.94 per share.

Wal-Mart shares fell $2.15, or -3%, in premarket trading Thursday to $69.29. The stock is up about 19% since the beginning of 2012, but has pulled well off its yearly highs of $77.60 in recent weeks.

The Bottom Line
Shares of Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) have a 2.23% dividend yield, based on last night’s closing stock price of $71.31. The stock has technical support in the $67-$70 price area. If the shares can firm up, we see overhead resistance around the $74-$75 price levels.

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT) is not recommended at this time, holding a Dividend.com DARS™ Rating of 3.4 out of 5 stars.

Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the Best Dividend Stocks, as well as a detailed explanation of our ratings system here.

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