Wal-Mart Reduces Prices On 10,000 Items


walmartWal-Mart Stores Inc., the world’s largest retailer, has reduced prices on more than 10,000 items after sales at U.S. stores dropped last quarter. The company plans to cut more prices in the coming weeks and months, Linda Blakley, a company spokeswoman, said.

Price cuts are part of Wal-Mart’s efforts to keep shoppers gained in the recession, said Walter Todd, a Wal-Mart investor. Sales at U.S. stores open at least a year fell 1.6 percent in the quarter ended Jan. 31, more than Wal-Mart had estimated. Comparable-store sales at Minneapolis-based Target Corp., the second-biggest U.S. discount chain, rose 0.6 percent.

Wal-Mart captured market share in the downturn with people cutting back, Todd, who helps manage $800 million in assets, including Wal-Mart shares, at Greenwood Capital Associates in Greenwood, South Carolina, said in an interview April 1. Can they keep some of that as the economy continues to improve? They are guilty until proven innocent on that front from an investor’s standpoint.

Wal-Mart fell 19 cents to $55.19 at 10:04 a.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. Before today, the shares had advanced 3.6 percent this year.

Price deflation on groceries and flat-panel televisions hurt same-store sales last quarter, Eduardo Castro-Wright, vice chairman and U.S. stores chief, said Feb. 18. Disruptions caused by store remodeling contributed to a slight decrease in store visits, Chief Financial Officer Tom Schoewe said.

{AZ Central/Noam Amdurski-Matzav.com Newscenter}