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Behind Wal-Mart’s Earnings Miss; Weekly Jobless Claims; What Billionaires Are Buying

Dan Berman
Behind Wal-Mart’s Earnings Miss; Weekly Jobless Claims; What Billionaires Are Buying
Behind Wal-Mart’s Earnings Miss; Weekly Jobless Claims; What Billionaires Are Buying

Wal-Mart (WMT), narrowly missing estimates for the quarter. The company released its report at 7am. It shows the world's largest retailer making $1.24 a share, a penny short of the consensus. Revenue was a whopping $116.9-billion, but that was shy of the $118.5-billion that was expected. So, where exactly did the company come up short? Yahoo! Finance Senior Columnist Mike Santoli has details in thew video above.

Now breaking news: Weekly jobless claims shattered the 5 1/2 year low they set two weeks ago. The Labor Department says there were 320,000 new claims filed last week, when 330,000 were expected. That low set two weeks ago was 328,000.

Wanna buy and sell like a billionaire? Now's your chance to see what the big boys have been up to thanks to Q2 "13F" filings. Forms released this morning show Warren's Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway has upped its stake in Wells Fargo and GM, and started buying Dish (DISH) network. But it has cut holdings of Kraft (KRFT), its spinoff Mondelez (MDLZ), and Gannett (GCI). Buffett's forms were supposed to be released yesterday afternon but there was a glitch.

Documents released yesterday show the embattled Bill Ackman has been exiting Mondelez and Proctor & Gamble (PG), while adding Air Products and Chemicals (APD). His frenemy George Soros has been picking up shares of J.C. Penney (JCP), the company where Ackman just left the board. Also Herbalife (HLF) which Ackman has shorted. Soros has also doubled his stakes in Apple (AAPL), but been dumping the Spider Gold Trust (GLD). Looking at Carl Icahn's 13F, there's no Apple there, meaning he picked up his shares after July 1st. But he has also been accumulating Herbalife in his tug of war with Ackman. Moving beyond that loveless triangle, John Paulson has also been unloading his Spider Gold Trust, unloading more than half his shares.

Only time will tell whether this next story is true. The website Sam Mobile reports that Samsung will unveil a smart watch on September 4th. The site says the device will be called "Galaxy Gear." Samsung is not commenting on the article, but it does in fact have a giant corporate event in Germany on the date mentioned.


Kohl's (KSS) like Wal-Mart has missed earnings estimates by a penny. The company says it made $1.04 a share when expectations were for $1.05. Revenue was right in line with predictions for $4.29 billion. Profits for the chain are down about 4% from a year ago and the company is now lowering the top end of its guidance for the year. Kohl's is up 20% year-to-date with about half those gains realized in January.

Cisco (CSCO) has been down as much as 10% since yesterday's closing bell when it reported earnings. The actual numbers were rather close to estimates with earnings of 52-cents a share after adjustments, and revenues of $12.42 billion. That top line number was a 6% rise over last year. But the company announced it will be laying off 4,000 workers, because it believes a slowdown is ahead. Prior to this morning, Cisco was up 30% year-to-date, largely on a spike after it reported earnings last quarter.

Dell (DELL) reports after the closing bell. The company was originally going to report next week, but just moved-up its release. Profits for the quarter are expected to be less than half of what they were last year: 24-cents a share compared to 50-cents, though on revenue which has dropped just slightly. Dell says it decided to report today because of quote "heightened interest" in the company. But it denies the move had anything to do with Carl Icahn's case against the company, even though a hearing is scheduled for tomorrow. Icahn is suing to force a special vote on Michael Dell's proposed $25-billion buyout of the company. Dell stock is up 28% in 2013, mostly on CEO Dell's original buyout offer at the start of the year.

Nordstrom (JWN) is another retailer taking part in today's earning's parade. The company is expected to post profits of 88-cents a share when it reports this afternoon. That would be an increase from 75-cents a year ago on revenues climbing further away from the $3-billion. Nordstrom has been facing the all-too familiar challenge of showrooming, so analysts want to see how its legendary customer service is counteracting the trend. Nordstrom has in fact been pushing free shipping to compete with the likes of Amazon (AMZN). Shares of Nordstrom are up a relatively modest 11% so far this year.