(Wal-Mart article updated with stock price and additional analyst commentary.)
In response, shares of the company are growing 2.4% to $53.85 in morning trading.
"With the stock trading at its typical floor valuation, we see limited downside risk in the shares," the brokerage firm wrote. "With expectations seemingly muted, we believe the bar is low for [Wal-Mart], and any upside to consensus should lift shares and likely generate a return to normalized valuation levels."Goldman Sachs also upped its price target on the stock to $60 from $58. But Citigroup is maintaining its hold rating on the stock and $53 target price. On Thursday, Wal-Mart announced that it is consolidating some of its U.S. operations in an effort to increase efficiency. The company will combine its U.S. realty, store operations and logistics divisions and reorganizing operations under three geographic business that will each be led by its own president. It is also creating a new division called Global.com to oversee its e-commerce business. The restructuring will result in a fourth-quarter charge of 4 cents a share. Wal-Mart also signed a sourcing deal with merchandise provider Li & Fung. Through the deal Wal-Mart could purchase $2 billion in goods through the firm in the first year. This is expected to help Wal-Mart consolidate some of its sourcing. Last week, the discounter said it would lay off 11,200 employees from its Sam's Club stores, and shutter 10 of the underperforming warehouse clubs. -- Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York. Follow TheStreet.com on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.
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