Home Depot (HD) continues to stand out in the brick-and-mortar retail world. This Tuesday morning and as I had anticipated last week, the company delivered another impressive set of results, this time aided by hurricane recovery efforts in the United States.
Revenues of $25.0 billion were substantially better than consensus and my own estimate of $24.5 billion, the largest top-line beat since 4Q15 and the 13th of the past 14 quarters. Comps came in very strong, 250 bps above consensus, driven primarily by a robust U.S. market that was hit by severe weather, wild fires and earthquakes in 3Q17. I calculate that the top-line results were responsible for a nine-cent uplift to EPS compared to my expectations (see table below). Excluding hurricane-related sales, I estimate that the revenue beat would have been only about half as pronounced, but still impressive nonetheless.
Gross margins of 34.6% came in exactly where I expected. But profitability could have been better if not for the fact that “sales related to the hurricanes were struck at a lower margin rate than the company average”. I believe average ticket price, up +5.1% and well ahead of inflation, helped to keep gross margins afloat.