I found various notable items in Walmart’s Q1 conference call transcript (pdf) dated May 17, 2011. I view Walmart’s results as particularly noteworthy given their retail prominence and focus on low prices. I have previously commented on their quarterly results.
Here are various excerpts that I find most notable:
comments from Mike Duke, from page 7:
“Despite improvements in some areas of the economy, core Walmart U.S. customers are still stretched. They remain concerned about rising prices for gas, energy and food, as well as employment issues. Customers trust us to be their ally in fighting rising gas prices and inflation.”
comments from Bill Simon, p. 28:
“The paycheck cycle remains pronounced. During the quarter, we saw continued pressure from ongoing macro economic conditions, as customers continued to trade down to opening price points and some private label products.”
comments from Bill Simon, p. 32:
Rising gas prices, high unemployment and increasing inflation continue to be the most important issues facing our customers today. One in five Walmart moms list gasoline as a top expense behind housing and car payments. We continue to be prepared to help her with low prices and broad assortment during this time of uncertainty.
Last year during the second quarter, Walmart had the deep rollbacks that drove our unit sales of some items, but did not deliver the intended traffic and basket lift we were looking for. We will not repeat these programs this year.”
The Special Note summarizes my overall thoughts about our economic situation
SPX at 1343.60 as this post is written