BENTONVILLE, Ark.–With sales rising, especially in its international and Sam’s Club operations, Walmart reported net income of $3.8 billion in its second quarter, 5.7 percent ahead of the second quarter of last year.
Net sales as a whole for the quarter, which ended on July 31, increased 5.5 percent to $108.6 billion. The major drivers for the top line were Walmart International, with a gain of 16.2 percent in sales, and Sam’s Club, which posted a 9.5 percent sales pickup including a same-club gain of 5 percent. Walmart’s U.S. sales increased 0.4 percent, including a drop of 0.9 percent in same-store sales.
Gross margin lost 10 basis points to end the quarter at 24.7 percent. Selling, general and administrative expenses increased 5.5 percent and were essentially flat as a percentage of sales at 19.5 percent.
Among the positives highlighted by Mike Duke, Walmart’s president and CEO, were the growth in the international sector and at Sam’s Club. Duke said the company has made progress in integrating the acquisitions of the Netto stores in the United Kingdom and Massmart in South Africa.
In the United States, Walmart experienced momentum in sales of grocery, health and wellness, hardlines and apparel, said Bill Simon, Walmart U.S. president and CEO. “We remain concerned about the economic pressure on our customers and the uncertain impact it can have on their shopping behavior,” Simon said.