Appliance and home improvement retailer Lowe's Companies, Inc. reported full fiscal year net earnings were down 8.5% from the previous fiscal year to $1.8 billion. In its full 2011 fiscal year, which ended Feb. 3, 2012, sales were $50.2 billion, down 2.9% from the previous year.
Lowe's fiscal year ends on the Friday nearest the end of January, so its fiscal year 2011, which ended Feb. 3, 2012, included 53 weeks. The 53rd week contributed $766 million to sales. Fourth quarter net earnings of $322 million, a 13.0% increase over the fourth quarter of the previous fiscal year. Sales for the fourth quarter were $11.6 billion, up 11.0% from $10.5 billion in the fourth quarter of the previous year. Comparable 4Q store sales were up 3.4% versus a comparable 14-week period. Comparable store sales for the fiscal year were essentially flat.
In fiscal year 2012 - which will have one less week compared to Lowe's fiscal year 2011 - total sales are expected to increase 1 to 2%. On a 52 versus 52 week basis, total sales are expected to increase about 3%. Comparable store sales are expected to increase 1 to 3%.
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