Sam's helps Wal-Mart profits shoot up 21%

Quarterly earnings for Wal-Mart Stores surged nearly 21% as strong results from its SamÕs Clubs and foreign stores offset tepid sales at its United States discount division, according to aHouston Chronicle newspaper article.

Bentonville AR-based Wal-Mart said net income climbed to $2.44 billion in the second fiscal quarter ending July 31, versus $2.02 billion a year ago.

SamÕs Club was the biggest surprise, tallying a solid 12.8% leap in quarterly operating prices even as it slashed prices in a price war with sector leader Costco.

Wal-Mart maintained profitability at SamÕs Club in part by teaming up with larger Wal-Mart discount stores to boost their buying power with suppliers, helping SamÕs pare its wholesale costs. Higher membership fees also elevated profits.

Lee Scott, Wal-Mart chief executive, said in a recorded message that he had not expected earnings growth at SamÕs to meet company expectations until well into the second half of 2003.

TAGS: Foodservice
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