Home De­pot rev­enue climbs 8.1 per­cent

The Washington Post - - ECONOMY & BUSINESS -

Home De­pot saw sales surge in the wake of this year’s bar­rage of hur­ri­canes, but the storms still took a toll on the re­tailer’s bot­tom line.

Even as cleanup and re­build­ing ef­forts helped the chain’s sales ex­ceed an­a­lysts’ es­ti­mates, ex­penses re­lated to the storms re­duced op­er­at­ing profit by $51 mil­lion. Cus­tomers stocked up on less prof­itable ply­wood and gen­er­a­tors dur­ing the dis­as­ters, which nar­rowed mar­gins, the com­pany said.

The good news is Home De­pot con­tin­ued to ben­e­fit from the re­bound in hous­ing prices, which spurs own­ers to spend more on fix­ing up their prop­er­ties. Last quar­ter, val­ues in 92 per­cent of metro ar­eas rose.

Rev­enue climbed 8.1 per­cent to $25 bil­lion, com­pared with an­a­lysts’ av­er­age es­ti­mate of $24.5 bil­lion. Profit rose to $1.84 a share, ex­ceed­ing the av­er­age $1.82 pro­jec­tion. That marked the 14th straight quar­ter Home De­pot has sur­passed pro­jec­tions. ALSO IN BUSI­NESS The par­ent com­pany of T. J. Maxx and Mar­shalls, TJX Cos., which also op­er­ates HomeGoods, said Tues­day that rev­enue at es­tab­lished stores was flat in the third quar­ter com­pared with a year ago — the first time it didn’t post an in­crease since 2009. The Fram­ing­ham, Mass.- based com­pany re­ported fis­cal thirdquar­ter profit of $641.4 mil­lion, or $1 per share. War­ren Buf­fett con­tin­ued to trim a once-ma­jor in­vest­ment in IBM while adding to newer hold­ing Ap­ple in the third quar­ter. The bil­lion­aire in­vestor’s Berk­shire Hathaway low­ered its IBM stake by about a third to 37 mil­lion shares as of Sept. 30, when it was val­ued at about $5.4 bil­lion, ac­cord­ing to a reg­u­la­tory fil­ing Tues­day. Berk­shire boosted its hold­ing in Ap­ple by about 4 mil­lion shares.

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