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Home Depot beats 1Q earnings expectations, misses on same-store sales

Home Depot (HD) exceeded Wall Street’s estimates on the bottom-line in fiscal first-quarter results, but missed expectations for comparable same-store sales as unfavorable weather earlier this year dented demand for the retailer’s products.

The nation’s largest home improvement retailer delivered adjusted earnings of $2.27 per share on revenue of $26.4 billion for its fiscal first quarter. Consensus analysts expected the company to report adjusted EPS of $2.18 on revenue of $26.4 billion for its fiscal first quarter, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. In the year-ago quarter, the company posted sales of $24.9 billion and adjusted EPS of $2.08.

Comparable same-store sales, however, grew just 2.5% overall in the first quarter, versus the 4.3% expected. In the U.S., same-store sales rose 3%. The metric is closely watched by analysts and serves as a measure of efficiency for retail companies.

Home Depot also reaffirmed its guidance for fiscal 2019. It sees revenue growth of about 3.3% for the year, along with a 5% increase in comparable same-store sales. Adjusted EPS is expected to grow 3.1% from last year to $10.03, below the $10.09 consensus analysts expected. This guidance does not take into account any potential impact from the recent hike to tariffs on Chinese-made goods to 25%, management said during a call with investors Tuesday.

Shares of Home Depot were little changed as of 6:19 a.m. ET ahead of the opening bell, rising 0.52% to $191.75 each.

Heading into earnings results, analysts expected unfavorable weather at the start of the year to have put a chill on home improvement projects and, by extension, results for companies including Home Depot and Lowe’s (LOW). The latter reports results Wednesday.

"We were pleased with the underlying performance of the core business despite unfavorable weather in February and significant deflation in lumber prices compared to a year ago," Home Depot CEO Craig Menear said in a statement.

During a call with investors Tuesday morning, CFO Carol Tomé said comparable same-store sales would have been closer to 4.5% for the quarter, if not for the effect of weather and deflation in lumber prices. The company’s guidance does not include commodity price inflation or deflation, so if lumber prices remain at current levels, full-year sales could be impacted by as much as $800 million, Tomé said.

In the first several months of the year, data on the housing market had been choppy, with mortgage applications spiking between increases and decreases, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association. However, home price growth has slowed, and pending home sales were shown to have jumped a much better-than-expected 3.8% in March, creating a market of new homeowners looking for products to help with home improvement projects.

Shares of Home Depot were up 11.1% for the year-to-date through Monday’s close.

Emily McCormick is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter: @emily_mcck

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