Back to top

Analyst Blog

Zacks Equity Research

Home Depot to Shut Down Stores

HD LOW

 ZacksTrade Now

This page is temporarily not available.  Please check later as it should be available shortly. If you have any questions, please email customer support at support@zacks.com or call 800-767-3771 ext.  9339.

The sluggish global economy compelled the world’s largest home improvement retailer, The Home Depot Inc. (HD - Analyst Report) to come up with the decision of closing down its remaining seven big box stores in China. However, the company will operate in the country through its two specialty stores and e-commerce facility. This action is going to affect approximately 850 associates of the company.

Home Depot is anticipating incurring an after-tax charge of about $160 million or 10 cents per share towards store closure expenses, lease termination, impairment of goodwill and other assets. Further, excluding the abovementioned charges, the company continues to expect earnings per share of $2.95 in fiscal 2012. It will continue to employ nearly 170 associates in China for its sourcing offices and specialty stores.

During late 2006, Home Depot made its first ever global presence by acquiring the twelve-store Chinese retail chain – The Home Way. The company lately realized that China is a do-it-for-me market and not a do-it-yourself market. Consequently, Home Depot has now adjusted its business concept accordingly. Home Depot believes that the new store format and e-commerce websites are made according to the Chinese customers’ needs and preferences.

Lately, Home Depot reported a better-than-expected financial result for the second-quarter of fiscal 2012. The company’s earnings for the quarter came in at $1.01 per share, climbing 17.4% from the prior-period earnings of 86 cents, primarily driven by comparable-sales growth and strong operating performance. Moreover, net sales inched up 1.7% to $20,570 million compared with $20,232 million in the prior-year quarter.

Our Recommendation

Home Depot is a leading player in the highly-fragmented home improvement industry. The company has implemented significant changes to its store operations to make these simpler and more customer-friendly. In addition, the company has reinvigorated itself with a shift in focus from new square footage growth to maximization of productivity through its existing store base. We believe these initiatives will induce more customer traffic to its stores while boosting its top line.

Moreover, with the introduction of new warehousing and transportation system, the company has been able to improve its supply chain while minimizing cost. Further, this has facilitated Home Depot to improve its Central Automated Replenishment System for immediate refilling of stock while reducing its investment in inventory.

However, the company’s business is highly competitive, primarily based on customer services, price, store location and assortment of merchandise. It faces stiff competition from local, regional and international players as well. To maintain its market share, the company is making selective acquisitions and strategic alliances with third parties, which are increasing its operational risks.

Home Depot, which competes with Lowe's Companies Inc. (LOW - Analyst Report), currently has a Zacks #2 Rank, implying a short-term Buy rating.

Please login to Zacks.com or register to post a comment.

New to Zacks?

Start Here

Zacks Investment Research

Close

Are you a new Zacks Member or a visitor to Zacks.com?

Top Zacks Features

Learn more

Start for as little as $4.50 per trade.

My Portfolio Tracker

Is it Time to Sell?

One of the most important steps you can take today is to set up your portfolio tracker on Zacks.com. Once you do, you'll be notified of major events affecting your stocks and/or funds with daily email alerts.

More Zacks Resources

Zacks Rank Home - Evaluate your stocks and use the Zacks Rank to eliminate the losers and keep the winners.

Mutual Fund Rank Home - Evaluate your funds with the Mutual Fund Rank for both your personal and retirement funds.

Stock/Mutual Fund Screening - Find better stocks and mutual funds. The ones most likely to beat the market and provide a positive return.

My Portfolio - Track your Portfolio and find out where your stocks/mutual funds stack up with the Zacks Rank.

Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers for Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers

Company Symbol Price %Chg
DIXIE GROUP DXYN 15.84 +7.90%
BOFL HOLDING BOFI 85.30 +4.97%
RAMBUS INC RMBS 12.31 +4.41%
VIPSHOP HOLD VIPS 148.73 +4.35%
NETFLIX INC NFLX 345.74 +4.32%