DIY re­tail­ers di­verge

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - NATION+WORLD -

The home im­prove­ment sec­tor has out­shined other re­tail­ers for sev­eral years thanks to the im­proved hous­ing mar­ket. But it’s start­ing to show signs of strain.

While Home De­pot nailed it once again with bet­ter-than-ex­pected third quar­ter re­sults, ri­val Lowe’s was be­set by hefty charges and mea­ger traf­fic to its stores.

At­lanta-based Home De­pot raised its an­nual fore­cast as its cus­tomers spent more with each visit. Lower un­em­ploy­ment, higher wages and strong hous­ing sales in re­cent years have helped.

Mooresville, North Carolina’s Lowe’s re­ported a messy third quar­ter as it strug­gled with weaker traf­fic and hefty charges for a re­cent ac­qui­si­tion. And while home sales have lev­eled off at a healthy level this year, the ul­tra-low mort­gage rates that have helped boost sales are be­gin­ning to creep higher.

Fears of a hous­ing mar­ket slow­down won’t dis­si­pate any time soon, says Scot Cic­carelli, an an­a­lyst at RBC Cap­i­tal Mar­kets. How­ever, the fac­tors driv­ing home im­prove­ment sales, such as hous­ing in­ven­tory lev­els and home prices, re­main strong.

An­a­lysts ex­pect the con­trast be­tween the two re­tail­ers to widen if Lowe’s con­tin­ues to lose mo­men­tum.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.