Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE: LOW) today reported net earnings of $2.8 billion and diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $3.74 for the quarter ended July 31, 2020, compared to net earnings of $1.7 billion and diluted EPS of $2.14 in the second quarter of 2019. Second quarter adjusted diluted EPS of $3.75 was 74 percent higher than adjusted diluted EPS of $2.15 in the second quarter of 20191.
Sales for the second quarter were $27.3 billion compared to $21.0 billion in the second quarter of 2019, and comparable sales increased 34.2 percent. Comparable sales for the U.S. home improvement business increased 35.1 percent for the second quarter.
In the second quarter, the Company invested $460 million in support of frontline hourly associates, communities and store safety. Through the first half of 2020, Lowe’s has invested $560 million in COVID-related financial support for its associates and $100 million in community pandemic relief, with a focus on minority and rural small businesses and health care workers. Additionally, the Company’s second quarter performance resulted in a record quarterly “Winning Together” profit-sharing bonus for its hourly associates at 100% of its stores, which totaled $107 million. For further information on the Company’s safety protocols in response to COVID-19, please visit corporate.lowes.com/covid-19-response.
“Our highest priority has always been protecting the health and safety of our associates and customers through a safe store environment and shopping experience. We are incredibly proud of our associates, and we are grateful for their hard work and ongoing commitment to safety,” commented Marvin R. Ellison, Lowe’s president and CEO.
“We delivered very strong second quarter results, with all merchandising divisions posting comparable sales growth exceeding 20% and all U.S. geographic regions delivering comparable sales growth of at least 30%. Sales were driven by a consumer focus on the home, core repair and maintenance activities, and wallet share shift away from other discretionary spending. Through our retail fundamentals strategy, we have dramatically improved our technology and operational platforms, which enabled us to meet customer demand and grow our business. Looking ahead, our sales momentum continues into August, and we are investing in the business to further our omnichannel capabilities and position the Company to deliver long-term value to associates, customers and shareholders,” added Mr. Ellison.
As of July 31, 2020, Lowe’s operated 1,968 home improvement and hardware stores in the United States and Canada representing 208 million square feet of retail selling space.
A conference call to discuss second quarter 2020 operating results is scheduled for today, Wednesday, August 19, at 9:00 am ET. The conference call will be available by webcast and can be accessed by visiting Lowe’s website at ir.lowes.com and clicking on Lowe’s Second Quarter 2020 Earnings Conference Call Webcast. Supplemental slides will be available approximately 15 minutes prior to the start of the conference call. A replay of the call will be archived at ir.lowes.com.
Lowe’s Business Outlook
On May 20, 2020, the Company withdrew its financial guidance for fiscal year 2020 due to limited visibility into future business trends in this unprecedented operating environment, which results in an unusually wide range of potential outcomes for 2020 financial performance.