Walmart Inc., the Bentonville, Arkansas-headquartered American multinational retailer, had missed profit forecast for fourth quarter of fiscal 2021 that ended on January 31, as the 59-year-old retailer had taken a header of around $1.1 billion in pandemic associated spending including a higher wage for warehouse workers, bonuses for store employees alongside expenses related to mass-scale sanitization.
On top of that, Walmart Inc., the world’s largest brick-and-mortar and online retailer had also downsized its full-year sales and profit forecast citing a sweeping upsurge in reinvestments as the American retailer had splashed out heavily on e-commerce, online advertising and healthcare businesses over the past fiscal year after coffering up as much as $560 billion in revenues last year when pandemic-wary Americans were stockpiling groceries during pandemic-led restrictions.
Aside from that, the Bentonville-based world’s largest retailer employing more than 1.5 million workers in the United States, had also added at its quarterly earnings’ report that it would be raising minimum wages to an average of $15 per hour, while about half of Walmart’s US employees would receive an wage of more than $15 per hour, though there would be some roles which would have a starting wage of $11/hour.
Walmart forecasts low-single digit growth this year
Concomitantly, Walmart added on its quarterly earnings’ report released earlier on Thursday that the world’s No. 1 brick-and-mortar retailer was expecting a low-single digit growth at its annual sales in fiscal 2022 that ends on January 31, 2022, far below than an 8.5 per cent growth in annual sales registered last year.
Besides, according to Walmart’s quarterly earnings’ report for Q4, 2021, the retailer’s operational profit scaled 3.1 per cent higher, while on an adjusted basis, Walmart shelved an earning of $1.39 per share, missing an analysts’ estimate of $1.51 apiece.
In tandem, following reveal of a pessimistic full-year growth forecast in sales on fiscal 2022, shares’ prices of Walmart Inc. had wrapped up the day down by 6.48 per cent to $137.66 apiece after faltering as much as 5.60 per cent in pre-market trading.
Meanwhile, referring to an aggressive expansion strategy largely aimed at diversifying the retailer’s businesses, speaking at Walmart’s investor day conference, the company Chief Doug McMillon said, “We’re going to invest more aggressively in capacity and automation to position ourselves to earn the primary destination with customers, we are absolutely playing offence here. ”