Walmart (WMT) first quarter 2025 earnings

People walk near the entrance of a Walmart store on May 14, 2024 in Miami, Florida.

Joe Raedle | Getty Images

Walmart will report earnings results Thursday, as investors look to the nation's largest retailer to gauge the health of U.S. consumers and the strength of the industry.

This is what Wall Street expects from the discounter, based on a survey of analysts by LSEG:

  • Profit per share: 52 cents adjusted expected
  • Gain: $159.50 billion

As the nation's largest retailer and private employer, Walmart is often seen as a bellwether for the U.S. economy. Still, the company has generally fared better than other retailers during a period of inflation because it sells basic products like groceries and has a value-oriented reputation.

Still, the discounter has felt inflation as its customers throw fewer items into shopping carts and show reluctance to jump to higher-priced items like TVs or computers.

This week brought promising news for Walmart and other retailers. Inflation fell in April, according to Labor Ministry figures released on Wednesday. The consumer price index rose 3.4% year on year. The closely watched number keeps track of how much goods and services cost at the checkout.

Walmart expects sales to grow this quarter and throughout the year. The company said in February that it expects consolidated net sales to rise 4% to 5% in the first fiscal quarter. It also expected adjusted earnings per share of $1.48 to $1.56 on a pre-stock split. The company conducted a three-for-one stock split in February.

Walmart has cut back in some areas and invested heavily in others. Earlier this week, the company said it would lay off and relocate hundreds of employees, including transferring many to its headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas. That move followed another cost-cutting measure: closing Walmart health clinics, a network of doctor and dental offices that had opened next to its stores.

On the other hand, the wholesaler has poured money into other endeavors. As it chases advertising money, Walmart announced in February that it will acquire smart TV maker Vizio in a $2.3 billion deal. The company is also upgrading and modernizing more than 1,400 stores across the country. It recently launched a new private label food brand with items and flavors aimed at younger and more affluent consumers.

Shares of Walmart closed Wednesday at $59.83, bringing the company's market share to $482.22 billion. The company's shares are up nearly 14% so far this year, outpacing the S&P 500's roughly 11% gain over the same period.

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